44 Wall St, 10th Floor
New York, NY 10005
Tel: 917.576.7880
Fax: 646.786.4411

Park Slope:

10 Plaza St East
Brooklyn, NY 11238
Tel: 718.623.0777
Fax: 718.623.0055

The basic order in which the sale and purchase of a coop or condominium unfolds, involves some or all of the following steps and stages:

  • Engage a good broker's services
  • Find the right buyer to seel to, or find the right place to purchase
  • Obtain mortgage (and mortgage pre-approval), unless it's to be an all-cash closing
  • Agree on a sales price and other significant items
  • Retain a good closing attorney
  • Seller's attorney drafts the Contract of Sale, after obtaining all necessary information from the client, the broker and the other side's attorney, as well as the managing agent
  • Buyer's attorney reviews Contract with client; if any revisions are to be made, negotiations will be had between the attorneys and/or amongst the parties
  • Final draft of Contract is sent by Seller's attorney, unsigned, with necessary legal attachments, to Buyer's attorney
  • Until contract is signed by Buyer, Broker should still be showing apartment
  • Buyer's attorney must do "due diligence" as to the real property being purchased
  • Buyer's attorney returns buyer's signed originals with 20% down payment
  • Seller and Seller's attorney review the final Contract and, if acceptable, counter-sign and return an original fully-executed Contract to the Buyer's attorney
  • Upon Buyer's attorney's receipt of the Contract, Seller's attorney deposits the 20% down payment (20% of the purchase price) into its legal escrow account
  • Seller should be making plans for moving, getting apartment in order
  • Buyer should be following through on two items: (1) obtaining its mortgage commitment, and (2) working with Broker to submit Purchase Application to Managing Agent. (This usually means collecting at least 2 years worth of tax returns, and other relevant financial information, as stated on the co=op or condo application)
  • Seller's attorney should contact Seller's current lender (if Seller has a loan on the unit), to obtain collateral (stock, lease, note, etc for a coop, and deed, note, etc for a Condo), advise of prospective sale, and get initial pay off statement. If documents are lost, sellers attorney must correct situation
  • Upon Buyer's receipt of mortgage commitment, Buyer's attorney must submit same to Seller's attorney. Within 3 days of Buyer's receipt of commitment, buyer must sign and return to Lender, and must also submit Purchase Application with all required attachments and information (tax returns, bank accounts, etc) to Managing Agent
  • Managing Agent sets up time to review application and, to arrange time to interview prospective purchaser(s)
  • Managing Agent grants or denies approval; no reasons need be stated. If Agent sets condition(s) to the approval, up to Buyer to decide if willing and able to comply
  • If denied due to any act or omission of prospective Buyer, Seller amy retain down payment
  • Once approved, lender and broker should be notified as well as attorneys. Seller's attorney should notify pay off bank once a closing date is set to obtain a current pay-off statement, and to inform of prospective closing date
  • If Seller has a home equity loan, freeze letters must be sent directly to lender
  • Closing date should be set as necessary for partys' needs, but this is always subject, cooperatively to schedules of Managing Agent, Lender or its attorneys (if any), a pay-off bank (of Seller's current loan on the unit, if any), the parties and their attorneys
  • Any unusual delays or defaults should be dealt with accordingly by the proper attorney
  • Pre-closing, figures due at the closing will be obtained and circulated
  • Seller's attorney must prepare all real property tax forms for payment and filing, at and post-closing, with NY City and NY State. If Seller is an out-of-state resident for more than two years, additional forms, use of an accountant's determination, and possible withholding of percent of purchase price for IRS may be required
  • Seller should be making arrangements for forwarding mail and, if necessary phone calls too, shutting land-line phones, Con Ed, gas, cable, internet and other services
  • Broker must make arrangement with Seller for Buyer to walk through unit prior to closing
  • At closing, attorneys will walk their clients through all necessary documents. Both parties must bring two (2) forms of photo identification. Seller must bring all keys. Buyer must bring all cashier and personal checks required
  • If there are any pre or post closing occupancy matters, these must be dealt with in advance and usually with board approval
  • Bank and coop board should be given Seller's forwarding address for tax and other purposes
  • Exchange checks and keys
  • Break out the champagne!!
  • BUYER:(Additional Items)

  • Must make arrangements for move-in (and receive from management, the return of any refundable move-in deposit)
  • Buyer must set up phone, cable, internet, electric services, change locks, etc
  • Get appropriate homeowners insurance for apartment asap
  • If making alterations, get references for contractor and see their work, complete alteration application for board approval, and expect some time lag. Also anticipate cost over-runs