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Old 10-15-2007, 11:11 AM
 
25 posts, read 123,324 times
Reputation: 13

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I recenlty moved to NYC and I figure rather than paying the high rent, I'd rather pay the mortgage.

I ruled out Co-op since I don't want to deal with the board.

I am looking for a Condo - I know Condo is more expensive than Co-Ops, so I am willing to sacrifice on size and neighborhood. My budget is $400,000 in Manhattan or $300,000 if I need to cross the bridge to Brooklyn or Queens.

Could you recommend safe neighborhood within my budget? Washington Heights? Is Inwood too far?

Thanks.

Lauren
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Old 10-15-2007, 11:29 AM
 
Location: Bronx, NY
1,526 posts, read 5,274,574 times
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Check out Loho Realty for listings in the Seward Park and other related coops on the (now gentrified) Lower East Side (downtown Manhattan) on Grand Street. One beds are usually about 450K and up, but studios may be in your price range, and they should be fairly roomy as studios go.

Yes, it is a coop, but the main criteria will be whether you are financially sound. They screen applicants before they waste their time showing them anything. Again, the coop board is not like many of the uptown boards--I believe the main concern is simply financial solvency.

Coops are much more common in NYC, esp Manhattan. I think they have some possible pluses over condos (which may not be as simple to get into as one might think, but I'm not sure).

You may be able to get a coop or condo in other Manhattan areas--you might try Hudson Heights, for example, which has a big coop complex. Again, Manhattan coops are more common than condos, and I think most of the newer condos going up in Manhattan would be out of your price range, but I might be wrong.

Washington Heights/Inwood may also be possible, but you'd have to check the area to see if it's ok for you. It's in a state of transition (upwards), and prices are rising.

To get a general idea of what's available, do a search on the New York Times online real estate section.
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Old 10-15-2007, 12:27 PM
 
25 posts, read 123,324 times
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Thanks EB,

I have 2 reasons for ruling out coops.
(1) Sublet policy. I am not fully committed to staying in Manhattan and I want to have the flexibility to rent out the unit if I want to move. If that happens in the first 5-10 years of purchase, I won't be making any money off the investment although the coop price may go up since interest portion of the mortgage is front-ended.
(2) CO-investor. My currently salary is low 80s. I have a sibling who wants to co-invest with me. Although my sister will not be liviing in the unit, most coop board will see it otherwise since investors are owners and are entitled to live in the unit they own. Coop boards frown upon that.

So, I concluded that coops are just pain in the rear.

I'd much rather take a smaller condo in less convenient location (I work in midtown).
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Old 10-15-2007, 01:26 PM
 
Location: Bronx, NY
1,526 posts, read 5,274,574 times
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Best advice is to do a specific search for condos in the five boroughs, etc, though sometimes the two options will be listed together on a search.

Another alternative would be to buy a unit that is less expensive and thus eliminate the mortage altogether or greatly reduce it. Although you might not consider it, Parkchester in the Bronx has one bed condos for 100K and up. There are threads about Parkchester here from residents who live there, and the area is considered reasonably safe, with a lot of shopping, about 40 or so minutes by subway to midtown. Only mentioning it because I think the condo selection in NYC will be relatively small, and you mentioned that condo vs. coop is a prime consideration.

There are also coops in the same price range in the Bronx (I live in a beautiful one) but there may be comparable units (coops and condos) in other boroughs or metro areas as well. Maintenance range can also be a consideration--and some (esp coops) include gas and electric (not a small thing considering Con Ed's prices are through the roof). Mine also includes basic cable. Riverdale in the Bronx is considered a lot more desirable and can be relatively affordable to buy into, at least at this point.

As far as subletting and increasing value, the five boroughs will likely see even more of an increase in prices in many areas. The Bronx coop I bought into this April was about half the price it is now about 8 years ago, and prices are continuing to creep up in many of the inexpensive coops/condos.

Coop boards vary greatly in their rules and requirements (including guarantors, co-investors, etc). They are literally laws unto themselves. So it might be prudent to inquire about any individual coop or condo you might be interested in. Condos are not "rule free" either by any means.

Still another consideration is the financial "health" of a coop board or condo association and whether they are financially sound and well run. Condos may be less particular about who buys in, which may be a downside as well in terms of who will be living in your building and possible future value.
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Old 10-15-2007, 07:33 PM
 
Location: Queens
842 posts, read 4,085,221 times
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Try the west side of Riverdale in the Bronx. Try Hells Kitchen; I see lots of construction going on here. Also look into L.I.C., Jersey City, and maybe even Greenpoint, Brooklyn.
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Old 10-17-2007, 07:20 AM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
7,135 posts, read 10,430,789 times
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I have some listings--shoot me an email if you'd like to hear specifics. Anyway, the $400k budget is very do-able right now--prices are softer than they were 6 mos ago. Check out East Williamsburg/Bushwick or Inwood/Washington Heights. Harlem may have some stuff too in that range.
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Old 10-17-2007, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Bronx, NY
1,526 posts, read 5,274,574 times
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Yes, but are they condos? If not, you'd have to explain to the OP how coops are a good option to pursue.
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Old 10-17-2007, 02:12 PM
 
1 posts, read 7,427 times
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Elvira,

I've enjoyed your contributions......i keep an eye on the boards as i am from out of town (England - UK) and looking to buy a condo or similar in one of the boroughs of NYC (I ruled out NJ due to taxes). I am a cash buyer, ideally i don;t want to spend more than $160k in cash but i can go a touch higher for the right thing.

You mentioned that in the Bronx where you are there are some places that are nice and maybe prices like that are achievable.

Could you point in the right direction then i can look up the appropriate threads and get some feedback.

thanks

Wayne
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