Now I'm not a native New Yorker, but many of those who are would have difficulty trying to answer the question of questions - "What is a co-op?" Well the best definition and explanation I've ever heard was given by Barbara Corcoran (Founder of the Corcoran Group). So here it is, sized-up in her own words...
Itâ€™s what makes New York so special! Youâ€™ll be a sharecropper, I mean a share holder. That means the apartment is yours, but you donâ€™t really own it. Well you own it; but you donâ€™t get a deed, instead you get a lease. But the great thing about a co-op lease is that there is absolutely no rent, just a monthly maintenance fee; which covers all the salaries of the super and the doorman. And the great thing about this is with a few hundred dollars at Christmas, theyâ€™ll fix anything.
And then thereâ€™s the co-op board of directors â€“ a group of your neighbors whoâ€™s job it is to protect you. They decide what you can and canâ€™t do, can and canâ€™t change, and who you can and canâ€™t sell to â€“ because thatâ€™s what theyâ€™re not paid to do! If you want to put in a dishwasher theyâ€™ll make sure itâ€™ll work by having the building engineer review the plans your architect submits. Heâ€™ll bill you by the hour and tell you that you canâ€™t do it. But donâ€™t worry, you can pay the super to sneak it in. Just make sure the box doesnâ€™t say dishwasher!
In short, a co-op is a one of a kind thing. And when you decide to sell the apartment, you have the right to sell it to whomever you want, as long as your neighbors like the person you want to sell it to. Your buyer just like you will have to submit of course a list of his personal assets, liabilities and income. And six full copies of his last two years tax returns.
Okay? Great, hereâ€™s a pen!