Rental Basics in New York>Question Details

Puffy425, Other/Just Looking in New York, NY

Can I move in to a condo without the condo board's approval?

Asked by Puffy425, New York, NY Wed Jul 29, 2009

I have to move to a new place in 3 days, and the owner says that I can move in first without the condo board's approval. What happens if the condo board finds out that the owner is renting out her condo without their approval? Will they have the rights to ask me to move out?

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Hi Puffy,

You can have a clause in your contract/lease which protects you against something like this. It really depends on the building in which you are going to rent it. If the owner of the unit is telling you that the condo board doesn't need to approve you, she probably knows the subletting policies. Some condo's require for an owner to occupy the apartment for a year or two before renting it, but that's very rare. We see more of that in Co-op buildings in which case the Co-op board WILL likely want to interview you.

The reason why people buy condos is for the freedom of subletting and few other restrictions. It's on the owners shoulders now and if anything is to happen she should be responsible of any monetary damages this might cause to you if for any reason you are forced to move out ( again that is very unlikely ).

Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 29, 2009
I think people are missing the point - I hear you saying you want to move in "first" without the condo's board approval, i.e. a little earlier than the time it would take to get such approval. Assuming you are going through the proper approval process, condo owners are allowed to have people stay as a guest and can submit a legitimate guest letter to the condo saying you are there temporarily pending final approval. It is legit.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 20, 2009
Thank you Karla!
This ain't Peoria!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 15, 2009
First of all, with all due respect to the kindly out-of-state commentators, this is New York City, we do things differently here. Not better at all, just differently! Puffy isn't buying, Puffy is renting from a private owner and there is probably no broker involved (although there certainly could be).

Puffy, if you don't have a lawyer handy, and you probably don't, I would find out the name of the management company and give them a call immediately. Sites like often list the management company, but you should find it on the paperwork or on front of the building itself, or ask the doorman or super. You can call the doorman if you're not local.

The management company can probably tell you what could happen to you, if anything, or who to call who is on the board to chat with. Actually I don't think the directors can do much of anything about your renting the place because it's a condo, not a co-operative, but you would love to have reassurance. The owner must keep up with the common charges.

Anyway, I hope it works out for you!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 14, 2009
They find out, you can get thrown out. You are an illegal renter.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 13, 2009
In NYC condos have the right of first refusal but if they apply that, they're forced to purchase the unit. Condos are not in the habit of interviewing the buyers as compared to a co-op. You're second question is, what will their reaction be when they find out I have a sublease without their approval? They won't kick you out, perhaps a penalty and then they'll want your renter to officially apply and disclose at least their bank statements to ensure they can afford the apartment. If there are any fees i.e. move in/out, application fee, processing fee, credit check fee someone will have to pay that. Consult with your attorney before making waves as a new resident to the building.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 29, 2009

This depends on the specific guidelnes the home owners association has. Not all of them require tenant approval. Your best course of action may be to request this information from the person renting you the property.'s always good to see it in writing, to protect your interests.

Good luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 29, 2009
I sell real estate in South Padre Island, TX and none of the condominium buildings require that you be approved by the board to move in. However, I suppose that if their condo declaration said you had to be approved then I suppose you would. That would be pretty rare. Ask you Realtor if you have a specific building you like if she knows. Although boring, it is a great idea to read those condo decs before you buy.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 29, 2009
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