Glenn Turnley, Home Buyer in Upper West Side, New...

I am a cash buyer for a co-op but currently overseas. How do I manage co-op board approval? I have excellent credit rating in my home country.

Asked by Glenn Turnley, Upper West Side, New York, NY Fri Mar 18, 2011

Further to above, I would wish to combine a buying & settlement visit with a board interview. (I would also like to assess whether the board passes MY approval too). Are co-op boardsaccomodative to such circumstances?

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Brooke Davida, SVP’s answer
Again, Glenn, if you purchase a condo you are not subject to board approval, only first right of refusal..when purchasing a coop, you are at the whim of the board in terms of when they will interview you etc...i will be happy to explain the intricacies of purchasing in the city. Feel free to reach out to. Me at anytime. My office # 212-444-7847

Best wishes

1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 18, 2011
Hi Glenn, all boards are different. My best advice is to have your agent contact the management company for any coops you have interest in. This way you know in advance what to expect. I would also gather as much credit information you have, letter from employer verifying wages, past two years tax returns, etc. If you need a referral to a top notch NYC agent please message me for her info. She is from overseas as well so she may be a great fit.

Christopher Pagli
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 18, 2011
The most efficient and expeditious way for you to purchase a home in New York City as a non-citizen is to purchase a condominium instead of a coop. I am happy to assist you in finding your new home.

Brooke Davida, SVP
The Corcoran Group
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 18, 2011

You say you are a cash buyer, wanting to buy a co-op from overseas. What you don't mention, and what no one below asks, is the critical question of whether you intend to occupy it or if it is an investment.

If this is an investment, you should only be considering a condo. Co-ops expect that the unit be owner-occupied. If you are planning to occupy it, you are going to need to prove that you will be working here, have ties here, and are establishing residency here. That is to show that you will be occupying it going forward, but to get the approval, having no credit history here (you say it is excellent in your country but not established here) is going to be a stumbling block as is the inability to produce a variety of other documents required in most board packages, i.e. landlord letter, employer letter here, references here, etc.

As to whether the board would accomodate your interview and closing to be one visit for you - they generally set up the interview on their own schedule, and the time it takes the attorneys to schedule the closing could leave a gap, making your visit is more extended than you would like.

All things considered, by far the best option for you is a condo.

Hope this helps.

Jenet Levy
Halstead Property, LLC
212 381-4268
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 25, 2011
Regarding co-ops aside from the disclosure of your financials as well as having the debt to income ratio & liquid assets after closing, there’s several co-op buildings that are more lenient then others. You should consider sponsor units with no board approvals, as well as those buildings less strict and I would advise condos & condos as well. Feel free to contact with any questions and best of luck.

Tony Lara
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson
Rutenberg Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 21, 2011
Hi Glenn. To answer your only question here directly, No. You won't be able to combine everything in one sitting just because you want it that way. There is an entire cast of characters involved in a sale and all schedules need to be considered. The sellers and your Attorney along with the Bldg/transfer agent will be setting the close.

As for what needs to be done in order to purchase in NYC, consult the many answers below. Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 19, 2011
Hello Glenn,

Your question has many facets on how to answer this. I will just give the basics. I typically give my clients who are unsure of how to navigate a co-op board; a 10 point guideline on how to pass, a sample of a co-op board package and what questions are typically asked, and a financial steament that is pretty much across the board for what co-ops require in NYC. From there, I let them decide if a co-op is truly the right fit for them, expecially if they are foreigners. Many foreigners finding this process financially and personally intrusive. If they are willing to jump through the hoops, then WE (buyer and agent) determine how stringent of a co-op board the buyer is willing to go. Lastly, your credit rating in your home country will not count when purchasing in the US. If you wish to receive the sample co-op application and 10 point guideline on how to pass the board interview, as well as a list of the financials they ask for, please feel free to contact me.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 19, 2011
Judging by what you have stated I would strongly advise you exhaust any condominium possibilities before you go co-op.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 19, 2011
Hello Glenn,
Whether it is a co-op or a condo, it will all depend on the building you will like.
And let's not forget about Condo-ops.
Did you choose a co-op yet? do you have a specific building in mind. Some co-ops are pretty easy going.
You financial and your personal background is very important too.
And most of all why are you buying in NYC? is it an investment? A pied a terre? a corporation purchase?
In most coops, you must reside there for the first two years etc..
I work for citi-habitats Relocation and I work with many international people and every buyer is different
It is best to contact me and chat over your background and your requirements and then i will be able to guide on your best purchase. You can contact me anytime...
Fern Hamberger
Sr. Asso broker
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 18, 2011
A condo is certainly much easier to purchase from the circumstances you describe. All coops are different some more flexible than others. There are many variables. While you don't have to be a US citizen to buy a coop you may need either a social security number, liquid assets in the US or transferred here or a source of documented income in the US.

While cash is usually king many coops prefer buyers/shareholders to have a small mortgage and liquid assets rather than spending all their assets on the purchase. Lenders provide protection to coops. A coop is personal property not real property. Coops are less expensive but more difficult to purchase.

Only the coop board can initiate a foreclosure. When a buyer has a coop loan, the lender, the buyer and coop sign a contract called a recognition agreement. The lender agrees to give the coop the 1st lean on the apartment. In exchange the coop notifies the lender when a shareholder is 3 months in arrears the lender will pay the coop the maintenance. The coop is guaranteed their maintenance.

A sponsor unit in a coop or a condop may be a viable option or alternative to a condo. Coordinating a board interview, approval and a closing may be difficult.

Feel free to contact me. Local real estate questions are always welcome. I live and work on the Upper West Side.

Mitchell Hall, Associate Broker
The Corcoran Group
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 18, 2011
Mitchell Hall, Real Estate Pro in New York, NY
Hi Glenn,

Coop boards require to show your financials and liquidity and every board views this differently. Also coops most of them want you to reside in the unit and use them less as a pied a tier...If the coop will allow you to live in the apartment part time and you have enough documentation you can provide that shows assets and liquidity a coop board may approve you....but you should really like to buy a condo it's truly much easier.
If you need any help please let me know I'd love to find/sell you a great place!

0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 18, 2011
A condo is definitely more straightforward but there's no reason to discount buying a co op. Finding a great agent that knows the specific market you are looking in will help you navigate the process and evaluate the viability of the buildings that you find an apartment you are interested in. Make sure the agent you work with is accomplished from a business perspective and has a good knowledge of the specific area you are interested in.

Good luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 18, 2011
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