The New York Department of State says in a stunning opinion letter distributed Monday by the Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY) that many of us real estate salespersons and associate real estate brokers, including me, are violating the law.
Associate Attorney Whitney A. Clark states in the letter that those of us who adopt or receive corporate titles such as vice president on upward are in violation of the real property law if we are not actually officers of the corporation — for example, any incorporated brokerage.
In the one-and-a-half-page missive, which amounts to a bombshell, Clark declared: Continue reading
Truncated living room in an Upper West Side studio apartment.
Given the cost of residential real estate in Manhattan, nothing could be more understandable than buyers’ willingness to match the imperfect co-op or condo that they decide to purchase with the amount of money they can afford.
Consequently, many folks in search of a new home readily accept the necessity of turning a two-bedroom apartment into a three-bedroom unit, an alcove studio into a one-bedroom home.
But they invariably pay a price both in aesthetics and, paradoxically, flexibility. Gone the dining area, the well-placed window in the living room, the airy ambiance.
So it is with Continue reading
If love is blind, trust should not be too.
It was time for my buyers to consider how much the essential renovations would run them in the event they wanted to make an offer for a two-bedroom apartment on the Upper West Side.
They asked in an e-mail what I thought the project might cost. Herewith my response: Continue reading
Stella Tsang (left), her husband center and auctioneer Mike Lewis going over contract.
A Long Island woman who gave her name as Stella Tsang was the winning bidder at today’s auction of a Chelsea condo that the U.S. Treasury Department seized after a former president of Taiwan pleaded guilty to money laundering.
Her final Continue reading
In no uncertain terms, Massachusetts real estate agent Bill Gassett declares in a post he wrote that “accompanied real estate showings do not sell homes.”
I am inclined to agree with him about the practice, in which the listing agent requires her or his presence when a buyer’s broker shows a property. Says Gassett:
There is a long standing misconception amongst some people that Realtors “sell homes”. It may come as a surprise but Continue reading
View through kitchen into living room of Upper West Side condo.
Conventional wisdom has it that vivid colors can be an overwhelming obstacle to the sale of a residential property that is on the market.
Mostly the notion seems to hold true. It is difficult, the argument goes, for prospective buyers to imagine themselves in a home that speaks too loudly of its sellers.
In fact, I recall one client of mine who rejected a house in suburban Washington, D.C. — solely, she said — because she hated the wall covering in the living room. That sort of reaction happens more often than you might imagine.
But the well renovated apartment pictured here may defy the advice to tone down an apartment’s personality as expressed by bright colors.
Although I cannot imagine myself living with the palette chosen by the condo’s residents, I did find the place to be Continue reading
Although home inspections are less common in New York City than elsewhere, they are essential in certain cases.
Sparing the expense of several hundred dollars, a buyer is particularly unwise to be pound foolish in the purchase of new apartment or single-family house, whether old or new. Inspections are especially useful for with respect to apartments in small buildings, on top floors and on ground floors.
(The BrickUnderground Web site recently provided a helpful home inspection checklist.)
An important question facing prospective purchasers is how to achieve the inspection with maximum protection and minimum chance to have sellers reject their offers.
Because the time between making an offer and signing a binding contract easily can last one or two weeks here in New York, one approach Continue reading
(Flickr photo by Steve Babb)
There are many advantages to buying a co-op in a small building, among them:
- Being well acquainted with your neighbors;
- Generally low maintenance fees;
- Scale that is desirable to many of its residents;
- Numerous opportunities to participate meaningfully as a volunteer in a diminutive community;
- Application procedures that may be less onerous than in larger buildings.
However, some buyers see the disadvantageous side of the coin: Continue reading