Use the timeline below to help take some of the mystery out of the process of buying an apartment in NYC.
The very first thing you should do is speak with a mortgage professional to get pre-approved. This will ensure that you’re looking at properties that fit your budget.
Real estate is key here and they need to be well versed in residential NYC real estate transactions.
This process can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months for many active buyers. But some people will find their homes much sooner or later than others. Have a lease coming up soon? Consider extending it so that you have more time to look. The more flexible your time frame, the better!
Be clear with your real estate agent and attorney about items in the apartment. Some items are usually included with an apartment. But other items (window treatments, special light fixtures, etc) may not be.
Always ask if something is or isn’t included. Do NOT assume.
The seller’s attorney will create a first draft of the contract. The attorneys will negotiate over the precise terms and any conditions and contingencies. During this time, the buyer’s attorney will also conduct due diligence. This is the time when you find out if there are any issues with either the apartment or the building.
Once the contract is ready, the buyer signs the contract. The contract then returns to the seller’s attorney along with a deposit. Once the deposit is received, the seller executes the contract.
A contract is binding only after both parties have signed it and value has been rendered (e.g. escrow monies).
Once you have a fully executed contract, you can begin the formal process of applying for a loan. The co-op or condo board will need a commitment letter from the lender as part of the board package.
You’ll start on the purchase application (a/k/a “board package”) at the same time as the mortgage application. It usually takes 2 to 4 weeks to gather the information and the requested documentation.
Once your board package is complete, it will go to the managing agent for review. The managing agent will send the application to the board members for review. In a co-op, the board members will decide if they want to meet you after reviewing your application. And in a condo, the board will decide if they wish to exercise their right of first refusal or approve the purchase.
The managing agent will contact you to schedule your interview. The timing of the interview will depends on each individual board’s procedures. It is critical to make yourself available for this interview.
Managing agents generally set the closing date. The lawyers will coordinate with the appropriate parties for available dates and times.
The average time from accepted offer to closing is 2 months for most condos and 3 months for most co-ops. But your time frame could be different. It all depends on your personal circumstances. Hopefully this timeline for buying an apartment in NYC has been
Have more specific questions about the purchase process? Feel free to contact me. I’m always happy to help!
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