Should You Get a Co-op or Condo Inspection?

As a first time buyer in NYC, you might be wondering if you should get a co-op or condo inspection done before signing on the dotted line. 

This is a great question to consider, especially if you’re the extra cautious type!

Here’s what you should think about when making your decision. 

Co-op and Condo Inspections DO Actually Happen

Co-op and condo inspections do actually happen in New York City. But inspections aren’t considered a mandatory part of the process. 

Why? 

Because a lot of the information you’d want to know about the apartment and the building can be uncovered by the diligence process

If a seller did renovations, your attorney can find out whether or not things are up to code based on building filings with the Department of Buildings.  

And if there are any issues with the building itself, that’s likely to come to light when your attorney reviews board minutes and available information about pending capital improvements and assessments.

A final point to note – if something is actually wrong with the building, there’s less risk to you because the cost of repairs will be spread amongst the owners. 

But if you want that extra level of assurance, go ahead and hire an inspector! 

When You Should Get an Apartment Inspection

In certain scenarios, getting a co-op or condo inspection can be very, very helpful. Here are some situations where you should consider it. 

  • No Managing Agent/Self-Managed Building 
    • Some self managed buildings keep wonderful records of their buildings. Others, not so much. To give yourself peace of mind, you might want to have an inspection just to be sure there aren’t any issues that even the building might not be aware of. 
  • New Construction
    • New construction doesn’t mean it’ll be free from problems (see this post to see what I mean). Things can go awry with even the best of developers. You want to make sure things were done properly to avoid issues down the line. 
  • Buildings with Just a Few Units
    • When you have a building with just a handful of units, getting an apartment inspection definitely makes sense. Why? Because if there are any major issues with the building (i.e. roof, foundation, facade), you’ll have fewer apartments to shoulder the cost.
  • You Saw Something That Concerned You
    • Did you feel like you saw something that looked like it could be water damage? Does the fuse box look a bit wonky? If you saw anything that concerned you about the condition of the apartment or building, hiring an inspector could be a smart move. You’ll get answers and more peace of mind.

Have more questions about buying your first home? Then download my FREE first time buyer guide which lays out everything you need to know from start to finish. Get it here. 

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