Purchasing a home is a highly detailed and personal undertaking. At NY Living Solutions, we make it our business to help you find the right fit for your lifestyle. We are prepared and determined to assist you in discovering the ideal property and neighborhood for your needs. Establishing a purchasing plan allows us to better equip you for this undertaking.
Find a target date for moving. If looking to finance, expect to take about 3 months from purchase to close. Buyers, begin your search 4-6 months before prior to an estimate moving date.
The New York City real estate market is extremely competitive. The most desirable and affordable properties can go to contract in a matter of days. The most important factors in getting a deal to closing include the following:
Location, size, amenities, building type, school locations and nearness to public transportation are crucial to determining what a property will cost. We suggest that buyers review financing options to determine what amount of money they can put toward a deposit, and then determine what they can afford for a monthly mortgage payment. Some people may want to see if they pre-qualify for a mortgage to determine their budget.
Next, you must determine what type of property interests you most.
New York City is a city of diverse neighborhoods, all with their own unique appeal. Before beginning your search, decide what is important to you (ex: proximity to public transportation or proximity to your job). Do you prefer a quiet residential neighborhood, or a bustling hub of activity and nightlife? Try to be open to different areas, as sometimes neighborhoods other than your first choice are more affordable and offer many of the same features. Visit our detailed neighborhood guide for information on all our neighborhoods. Also, ask your New York Living Solution broker for recommendations, for you may not be aware of them and they may best suit your needs.
Pre-qualified, also called pre-approved, is when a perspective buyer shares their income level, debt and credit information with a lender, so the lender can provide an estimated loan amount, based on this criteria. Being a pre-qualified buyer will reassure a seller that any offers made are bona fide and that a buyer can actually make the purchase. In fact, most offers submitted by New York Living Solution are often accompanied by a buyer's pre-qualification letter; this letter indicates to sellers that financing is an option.
Ask your New York Living Solution broker to provide you with information about financing, estimated monthly mortgage payments, and any other necessary qualifications. Pre-approval letters make for strong offers because the lender has already pulled a credit report, checked debt/to/income ratio, and done an analysis of your finances. It is preferable to be pre-approved, so that there will be no surprises when the credit report is received.
Based on your selections and budget, our specialists will arrange a tour the properties that best fit your needs and lifestyle. The length of the search process is determined by your criteria, but usually lasts 3-6 months.
If you really want to buy a particular property that has a lot of interest, share with the seller on the fact that you are a qualified buyer. It does not matter whether you plan to buy a studio or a building; chances are that there are a limited number of properties available in your price range. In a competitive market, attractive properties can be in contract before they appear in the classified ads.
Brokers tend to notify serious buyers first. Make sure that you are ready to buy; have all your paperwork in order including financial documentation and pre-qualification for a mortgage. Communicate yours needs, budget, timetable, and neighborhood preferences.
Make yourself available to view properties. By being flexible with viewing properties during the workweek, you can avoid weekend shoppers, congested open houses. Many of the best buildings tend to display properties between 10-3, M-F.
How do I make the deal happen?
After finding the property you want, immediately make a verbal offer. Consult your New York Living Solution broker for the best ways to extend an offer to a seller. When considering the right buyers, besides money, various factors influence sellers. During this stage, you may negotiate every aspect of the apartment with the seller, including the fixtures, floor/carpet, fireplaces, appliances, windows, etc.
If the verbal offer is accepted, have your broker get confirmation of the offer and acceptance in writing. Once the written offer is accepted and signed, your New York Living Solution broker prepares a transaction summary (also known as a "deal sheet"). This is sent to the seller's and buyer's attorneys for review. Using the signed offer and acceptance, the seller's attorney then prepares a contract of sale. After the buyer's attorney reviews the contract, negotiates terms and evaluates the property's financial statements, the buyer then signs the contract and presents the down-payment check. Generally, down payments range from 10% - 20% of the contract of sale. This money is often held in the selling attorney's escrow account to be sent to the seller's attorney. The seller then executes the contract.
Note*: Verbal offers are not legally binding. In fact, in the New York City area an offer is legally binding when both the buyer and the seller sign a contract of sale. Sometimes sellers are tempted by higher offers. To avoid problems, be prepared and have your attorney move quickly through, reviewing financials and completing the contract.
The real estate market in New York City is a very dynamic market. Having a real estate attorney who specializes in the NYC market is very important. First, they know the intricacies of the laws and regulations. Second, they can quickly respond to any problems that arise, and therefore, expedite the closing. Ask your New York Living Solution broker to assist you in selecting a qualified real estate attorney.
Once the sales contract is finalized, you may apply for a mortgage. After the mortgage is approved, you will obtain a verification letter from the lender to include in your board package. Buyers should apply for a mortgage as soon as both parties sign the contract. The mortgage process takes up to 45 days and can involve several procedures:
With your specialist's aid, you will finalize your board package, complete your application, and prepare for your personal interview with the board directors. Your package should include a complete financial review of your assets and credit history, your past three tax returns, disclosure of your past and present employment (including salary), and professional and personal references. After your personal interview, you will be notified of the board's decision within three days.
If buying an apartment, coop, condo or any other property with a board or association, prepare your application package with your New York Living Solution broker. These packages tend to vary from building to building. Most boards use the same financial requirements as the bank. Keep an extra copy of your mortgage application and any related documentation. Buyers are required to get personal, professional and financial letters of reference. If renting, get a letter of reference from your current landlord. Ask what information is needed and for copies of sample reference letters. The board package is important; therefore, answer all questions in a clear, concise manner and give an accurate description of your financial qualifications. Before submitting your application package, write a cover letter, organize the presentation and review it with your New York Living Solution broker.
The board package is submitted after a buyer receives his/her mortgage-loan commitment letter; it is submitted to a building's Managing Agent. The Managing Agent checks the application, evaluates credit and references, and then submits the package to the board. The board then reviews the completed package. Additional information may be requested, or if the package is passed, an interview is scheduled. Either an interview committee approves new applicants, or the board will do so during its monthly meetings. Your New York Living Solution broker can assist you as to the date, time and any other preparations for your interview.
Before closing, your NY Living Solutions broker will assist you in inspecting the property, to assure all is working properly and as agreed on the "deal sheet."
A closing is where a buyer gives the seller money in exchange for ownership and title to a particular property. This bargained for exchange, or consideration, transfers ownership of the property. The seller also needs to sign different documents including a deed. The place of closing is normally at the bank attorney's office. The parties present will be: seller, bank attorney, brokers, seller's attorney, buyer's attorney and title closer.
Generally, sales take between 3-5 months to close depending on various factors. The most common factors affecting closing include mortgage and financing, condo/coop board approval and negotiation.