Buying in trust, foreigners can save on taxes

Part 2 of 2

(Flickr photo by allie_caulfield)

Foreign buyers who successfully cross financing hurdles then need to consider the most prudent way to hold title to real estate.

Lawyers often advise investors — whether foreign or domestic — to purchase property as a limited liability corporation (LLC).

The chief advantage is that LLCs shields their members from financial claims in excess of the value of the real estate.  In other words, an individual’s others assets are protected.

However, Continue reading

Foreigners: apartment buyers with special needs

Part 1 of 2

(Flickr photo by allie_caulfield)

The foreign buyers you read about who are purchasing super-luxury apartments that are sky-high not only in location don’t concern themselves with financing their purchases.

Nor do those whose chief interest is to park their funds in a safe place seek out lenders.  (Of course, foreign buyers may have in mind a safe haven for their funds as well as a desire to increase their investment with financing assistance.)

But for foreigners who want a modest pied-à-terre or perhaps housing for their children attending school in the U.S., a mortgage can be important.

They may be able Continue reading

Out and About: A textbook case of overpricing?

Everything about this co-op is superlative. (Brown Harris Stevens photo via OLR)

When I walked into a studio apartment in the high 60s on Central Park West, the gut renovation bowled me over.

So did the price, $980,00 with monthly maintenance of $1,166.  That for a north-facing co-op of probably no more than 550 square feet on a high floor in a full-service post-war building.  From the balcony, and only the balcony unless you stand at the window, there are superb views of the park.

But $980,000, I wondered aloud? I told the listing broker that I couldn’t imagine anyone paying that much, but he told me that Continue reading