The Purchasing Journey An Overview of the Home-Buying Process

The following article is an excerpt from The Ultimate Guide to Buying and Selling Co-ops and Condos in New York City, a book I wrote that was designed to be the ultimate guide: a good overview of what you need to know about buying and selling co-ops and condos in New York City; a reference guide to walk you through the specifics of each stage of the process; a guide to pertinent terminology; and an introduction to the basics of real estate investing.

A substantial part of my professional career has been dedicated to training. The original program I developed arose from my discussions from new salespeople and consisted of a series of audio tapes. But the real estate market is never static, and I found myself having to make more tapes as new issues appeared. The current Bellmarc training programs take two months of intensive work to complete. This book represents the next logical step. Just as I teach salespeople, there are many things I can do to help a buyer, seller, or interested third party better understand the world of cooperatives and condominiums in New York.

What follows is Chapter One of The Ultimate Guide, a description of the purchasing process. It endeavors to provide the perfect backdrop for moving seamlessly and close to effortlessly into the co-op or condo of your choice... Good Luck!

Step 1: Submitting the Bid

As far as the seller is concerned, the sales price, in the vast majority of cases, is "all cash." The seller will receive a check for the full amount on the day of the closing. About 75 percent of the time, the buyer will need a loan (mortgage) from a bank in order to have enough money to complete the transaction. If you need a mortgage, your offer is conditional upon your loan being approved by a lending institution. Your purchase offer is considered an offer subject to financing.


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  • After a coop board in NYC approves you and tells the buyer to set a closing date how long do they have to close? It's a cash deal and the contract doesn't give a specific date. The contract only says the closing should be on or around Dec. 1.Thank you.
  • if you receive coop board approval of transfer of shares to a buyer, is that binding? The letter of approval had no conitions, but the lawyer for the coop is now requiring a usage agreement since the buyers already have an apt in the building. Wouldn't the letter of approval mentioned conditions if they were required?
  • Our Experience in buying a coop. When the board rec'd package, they denied the purchase sale price which was above the appraisal! So we canceled the contract and lost money.