Shinymama, Home Buyer in Lower East Side, New...

How much should I offer on a 450K apartment that is move-in ready? I just have NO IDEA!!

Asked by Shinymama, Lower East Side, New York, NY Sun Jan 30, 2011

Help the community by answering this question:


Jenet Levy’s answer
This all depends on whether it is priced high, fair market or low. There is no set formula. What you need to do is have a skilled real estate agent analyze comparable sales to see what fair market value is. We do this by looking at what is on the market, in contract and recently closed and correct for a myriad of aspects.
I would really suggest you have an experienced agent work with you to establish what the unit should trade for, and have them negotiate on your behalf and then take you through all the steps of purchasing.

Jenet Levy
Halstead Property, LLC
212 381-4268
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Feb 6, 2011
Yes, this is why buyers get themselves a buyers' broker!

Once you've made an offer, however, it's hard or sometimes impossible to bring a broker on board, so decide before you make your opening offer.

One thing I can tell you--the listing price only tells you the seller's expectations, or sometimes dreams!, it does not tell you what the apartment "should" sell for in the current market. For that you need to work with data from comparable sales, in-contract listings, and current listings.

If you'd like me to represent you as a buyer's broker, just let me know, I'd be happy to help you.

Karla Harby, VP
Charles Rutenberg Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 1, 2011
Hi Shiny, I agree with many of the folks below. 1) Its impossible to give you an answer without lots more information 2) Even with a specific number in mind it is very difficult to get a seller to agree to a lower price without the benefit of hard data and the sales/negotiation expertise. A good buyer's broker is invaluable in situations like this. Their work on your behalf comes at no cost to you - as they are paid by taking half of the seller's commission - so there's really no reason to go it alone on a purchase this large and this important. To learn more about the best way to buy property check out the video linked below. Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 31, 2011
Do you have an agent, and if so, what is he/she suggesting...there are no set standards as to how much below list price to offer, therefore review comps with your agent--recently sold similar properties in the immediate area, then make a determination--keep in mind that if a property is listed on target for today's market, or slightly below, multiple offers may occur.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 31, 2011
Shiny, you really have your answer below. Without you using a broker to help you navigate through the purchase process, you won't really get a lower price accepted simply because you are trying to fly solo. Forget the dual agency thing someone mentioned below. The listing broker doesn't want to represent you anyway. They're already representing the seller.

You just can't offer anything. If the offer is too low and by some small miracle it gets accepted, the board may reject the application as they have to watch their valuation throughout the building sine they are shareholders themselves. Your very question tells us all that you need someone to represent you. Yield to the obvious and get with a broker of your choice. Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 31, 2011
Dear Shiny mama,

I am sure you know by now: most real estate transactions in New York are co-broke. That means that the sellers broker and the buyers broker split the commission 50/50.

The buyer’s broker is working with and for you, at no charge for you- the Buyer. Your broker’s job is to inform you and help you analyze the ever-changing New York real estate market, so that your decisions are the right ones. Your broker will help you find recent and relevant comps, help you navigate through the buying process and help you prepare an offer that feels right for you based on the current market and this specific apartment.

The buyer's broker's goal is to get their buyer the best available property for the best possible price - in the buyers case this is usually the lowest possible price.

The seller's broker's goal is the get their seller the best possible price - in the seller's case, this is the highest possible price.

If you are working without a buyer's broker on your side, the sellers broker will just receive 100% of the total commission and the broker on the other side of the transaction will only be looking out for their client's best interest, not yours.

My advice to you, or anyone else who is looking to buy real estate in Manhattan, is to meet and interview a couple of brokers (preferably brokers that work in the neighborhood you are interested in) and see who you feel will best represent you. As a buyer this is a great deal for you, as you don't have to pay anything to get a professional to work with you and look after your best interest.

I am working primarily on the West side of Manhattan: West Village, Soho, the High Line Area, Chelsea, Flatiron, but I am always happy to meet with you and explain more in detail how I work as a buyer's broker.

Filippa Edberg
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
It sounds like you need a good buyers' broker to help you with both of your questions. What you offer depends on many factors, including what comparable apartments in the neighborhood have sold for recently and where you are - what you are comfortable paying and if you are willing to lose the apartment.

A good buyers' broker can also let you know how long the apartment has been on the market and provide more information, in addition to negotiate a good deal for you and prepare your board package.

There is no broker paid by the BUYER in a sales deal. The seller is already in contract to pay a broker's fee, which will be split between the buyer's broker and the seller's broker. It is only to the buyers' advantage to be well-represented.

Joan Kagan
Metropolitan Residential Partners, LLC
212.255.5200 (c)
917.992.9433 (o)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
It is the broker/agents job to help you with comps and negotiate on your behalf even though the Seller pays the Brokers' commissions. If there is a listing agent, he/she will be representing the Seller and its upto you to ask for your own broker or let the Listing Agent be a Dual agent. If its just between you and the Seller, then you can start at 10% below ask. It all depends on how long its been on the market and what the Maint is in relation to the ask and if there are other offers and how motivated the Seller is.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
Clearly it depends on a host of factors. Location, size, building amenities, condition, etc. You need to look at comparable units in the same building to get a good idea of what you should offer. can provide you with most of this information, although a good broker is traiined to interpret the information and negotiate the best deal. Please let me know if I can help in any way.

John Speaks Bond New York 917-697-6035 (P) (W) jspeaks@bondnewyork.comJ
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
It all depends upon the specific details of the apartment.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
It all depends upon the specific details of the apartment.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
Do you have a Buyer's Broker representing you? If so, then you should be able to get comps and the recent and current price per sqaure foot history for this building...I would'nt move forward until I had more information.
Best, Christopher M., Broker
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
You need to get comparable for what has sold in the building and neighborhood in the last few months to have a better idea of what the apartments worth.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
Hello Shiny Mama
working with a broker who represents you in any transaction will save you a lot of money and it is for free...
It does not cost you a penny. In fact you will learn a lot and you will be aware of of all the steps in the process of buying , selling and even subleasing your coOp eventually.
So if you wi sh to know a lot more than how much you should offer you should call me and I will be able to help. I have to know which coop? what views? etc... etc...and whether or not you should even be in the building to begin with..

but to answer your question you should start the offer 5-10% of the asking price. and that will all depend on the seller and how motivated they are, how long was the coop on the market and how overpriced the coop is and the comparables in the area. there are a lot of parameters required to analyze the offering price....
Good luck
and please do not hesitate to give me a call at 646-660-0060
or email me at
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
Is it a studio, 1 bedroom? I presume a co-op. What is the maintenance? Sometimes those with high maintenance go for less, those with low maintenance go for more. Which, when you think about it, may not make sense, as one would think you get more with higher maintenance, but it is the way it seems to go. How many square feet is it? I once financed a co-op for someone on the lower east side that was considered a 1 bedroom, but it was only about 400 sq ft.
Has anyone been able to show you comps? Also, is this the first apartment you have looked at, or have you seen a lot of others? if you know that the asking price is fair, and you really want it, then you should offer closer to asking to get it. If you could take it or leave it, and you have seen better apartments for less, then offer less. There is no right answer here. You have to do what you feel is right for you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
That is really impossible to answer without more details.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 30, 2011
Search Advice
Ask our community a question
Email me when…

Learn more

Copyright © 2015 Trulia, Inc. All rights reserved.   |  
Have a question? Visit our Help Center to find the answer