Buying a new home is a very big decision that can be filled with excitement and fear, even if you're just moving across town. When you're coming to New York from another city, state, or even country, however, the task becomes much more challenging. Unless you know exactly where you want to live, relocating to the city means searching through over 300 miles of neighborhoods spanning five boroughs to find the right home. Manhattan alone breaks down even further into hundreds of little communities with homes for all budgets, each with its own special personality.
Navigating the metropolis can be tricky for those who aren't familiar with the area. In many cases, an employee who's part of a corporate relocation may only have a short period of time to visit and find a residence - and that's not counting the paperwork. Here, it isn't simply about plunking down a deposit and proof of a former residence. The financial requirements to become a Manhattanite could include employer letters, pay stubs, tax returns, bank statements, listings of assets and liabilities, reference letters and more.
Gathering this information for the application process is enough to leave even the most seasoned homeowner breathless. Without professional assistance, the entire process of finding a home can become an overwhelming and exhausting experience. Moving is generally recognized as one of life's top stressors, but even if you're trying to settle in a take-no-prisoners town like New York, there are professional relocation specialists who can make the transition easier. These pros are trained to complete many of the tasks needed to settle you in your new apartment, or your all-new city.
"Someone who is a relocation expert will be well-versed in all angles of the real estate market, not just one segment of it," says Gary Malin, chief operating officer of CitiHabitats, Inc., a brokerage firm in New York City. "When taking an area tour, the expert can knowledgeably move from one neighborhood to another."
"Part of what we do is prepare the individual and their family for the moving process," adds Sharon Michnay, relocation manager for Halstead Property LLC in Manhattan. "We give them a starting place so they aren't walking into the situation blind. It can be expensive to stay here on a home-finding visit, so we get the stumbling blocks out of the way before they arrive so by the time someone gets here, they know what to expect and have some knowledge about the market."