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Extended Stay after Closing - NYC Jun 03, 2023

Can a seller stay in unit after closing if previously agreed to by buyer?

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Yes, if both the buyer and seller agree to it in their contract. There is usually a specific date mentioned in the contract when the seller must leave.

I’ve seen contracts where the buyer gives the seller a few weeks to stay so the seller can tie up loose ends.

When I’ve seen this situation invoked, the seller must leave by the end of the month, making it nice and neat for the buyer to take over the apartment on the 1st of the month.

I’ve never seen a Board reject this type of agreement.

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Thank You Marty, that is great to know. : -)

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SHARC technology - Chloe Jun 01, 2023

Has there been any progress updates on the installation of geothermal technology to heat the building?

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Try Googling "SHARC technology". I'm sure you'll find the greatest amount of information available.

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Thanks, Steven424, Will Do.. :-)

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You piqued my curiosity, so I looked up SHARC Technology. If you want my opinion, I think it would be a complete waste of resources to install a unit that does nothing more than recover heat from a building's wastewater. Most buildings today do not generate sufficient wastewater at a large enough thermal differential to justify the return on investment.

Here's an article I found https://highmark.co/technologies/sharc-wastewater-energy-recovery/ Your mileage may vary.

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501 (c) (3) membership "shares" sold - David Carrillo May 30, 2023

What, if any, specific reporting is required by IRS for the "gain" on shares of an ex-member departing charitable tax-exempt co-op? I'm in California so knowledge of co-op law is almost non-existent here. The members are mostly very poor so I'm guessing they are not a high priority for IRS. I don't see anything in the Form 990 instructions and my 2008 edition of Tax Management's Co-op Portfolio doesn't seem to cover this--Joel E. Miller ESQ where are you?

dc

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You should consider consulting a California attorney who specializes in CA co-op law, rules, and regulations. Most of the contributors on this board are familiar with NYC co-ops, and I'm pretty sure this is little to no commonality between CA and NYC co-op rules and regulations.

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Unsold Shares - Greg May 24, 2023

The owner of unsold shares of several apartments died without a will.
His brothers are attempting to get court permission to take over the apartments.
If they do so, are they the owners of unsold shares and do they therefore have the right to sell
to other investors as unsold shares?
Can the Coop force them to sell to owner-occupiers?

Thanks

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My best and only advice is that you not do anything except bring the matter to the attention of the co-op's attorney and be guided by what they tell you. The few dollars you may save by trying to do this yourself could mushroom by orders of magnitude if you don't proceed to the exact letter of the law. My wife was a Trust and Estates attorney and you would not believe the levels of detail and complexity in dealing with something like this.

Good luck

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Forced to Replace Fuse Box with Circuit Boards - VA Yonkers May 19, 2023

My Co-Op building management is forcing shareholders to replace their fuseboxes (which was there when I moved in eight years ago) with circuit breakers at the shareholder's expense. If they are requiring it, shouldn't the be responsible for the cost?

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Quick question. Where do you think the co-op's management would get the funds to replace fuse boxes with circuit breakers throughout the entire building?

Quick answer: Shareholder maintenance increase or assessment

It's much more financially fair to all shareholders that each unit owner be responsible for replacing their fusebox only. Over the years individual shareholders may have added additional electrical capacity to their fusebox or made other changes resulting in a more complex replacement and higher individual replacement cost.

If you read your proprietary lease, there should be a section that states you purchased your unit "as is" and become responsible for all defects extending back to when the Offering Plan was approved. I think it's paragraph 18 in most standard PL's

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Our Coop did the same it's an upgrade from the old glass fuses to breakers. Cooperators should not be significantly upgraded without Board and Management approvals to increase electrical capacities. This is to ensure code compliance and safety measures. It would be on your proprietary lease, or house rules

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Hi, your Proprietary Lease (PL) should have a section called Repairs by Lessee which spells out the responsibility of the Shareholder and the corporation with regards to repairs.

Traditionally, all electric wiring and service, once it enters into your unit is the Shareholder responsibility. We do this replacement of Federal Pacific / STABLOK breakers that are a fire hazard and the shareholder is always responsible for the payment, as per the PL.

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Denying Buyer - Billy Joe Apr 30, 2023

Does the board have the right not to interview a buyer after paying for
a credit check?

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We have applicants who bought a co-op of three hundred thousand, and the board refused to interview the people who would put in a trust fund. The daughter paid all cash for the apartment for the parents.

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There is a whole list of purchaser characteristics known as "Protected Classes" which prevent boards from denying the sale of an apartment. Some better-known Protected Classes are race, religion, sexual orientation, age, handicap, etc. If a purchaser falls into any one of these classes and their application is denied, they can sue for discrimination.

This leaves a very limited list of reasons a purchase can be denied. The most common one is the purchaser's financials. Lesser known reasons are diplomatic immunity or status, firearm ownership, disallowed pets, etc.

It is for this reason that all board members and anyone involved in the purchase review should never have *any* contact with a purchaser, ever. The financials must be reviewed and approved before the interview is scheduled, otherwise, the board leaves itself open to a discrimination suit for the briefest of encounters.

Putting shares into a trust is an entirely different situation. It's much more legally complicated than simply titling the shares in the name of the trust. The board needs to pass a resolution allowing shares be held in a trust, and a lot of ancillary issues worked out and agreed upon before the formal transfer takes place (who's allowed to live in the apartment, who is responsible for maintenance and assessment payment, who are noise and other complaints directed to and notices served upon, etc)

The co-op may not allow shares to be held in a trust, which is why they refused to interview the purchasers. The board knew they would reject the sale and did not want to allow a situation where the board could be accused of discrimination if any of the protected class characteristics were obvious at the interview.

From this point, the only communication should be through the attorneys. And since I AM NOT AN ATTORNEY, this advice is worth what you're paying for it. ;-)

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> Join the conversation Comments (2)

As usual, Steven424's answer is excellent. I do have to disagree with one sentence, though: "This leaves a very limited list of reasons a purchase can be denied." It's just the opposite: there's a "very limited list of reasons" for which you *cannot* deny a purchase. It is perfectly legal - though idiotic and infuriating - for a board to deny an application for a ridiculous reason. Left-handed? Enjoys Beethoven? Has the same name as a board member and you don't want mail getting confused? (I've read that this has actually happened.) None of those are protected classes, so there's no legal hurdle. But of course it would be hideously inadvisable and misguided to do so, and your coop would get a terrible reputation.

In practice, rejections are *overwhelmingly* for financial reasons. A poor credit report would certainly fall into that category. The runner-up reason would be the proposed use for the apartment. "I plan to practice flamenco dancing for approximately 16 hours per day."

And to repeat Steve's important point: do not have *any* contact with the prospective purchaser(s) before the interview. Make your decision based on the application and associated documents, then after you've decided to say Yes, make the interview a meet-and-greet. Do not interview at all if the financials are unsatisfactory, including the credit check.

Note: I AM NOT A LAWYER.

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Thanks for the additional information and updates, Marty. The only rejection we really ever considered was for financials, and we were able to work something out.

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I agree Steven. In my 25 years on the Board, I think that every rejection was for financial reasons.

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I would think so. Paying for a credit check is normally a routine part of submitting an application, whether or not the application is ultimately approved. It's just a step in the process. There are many reasons why an applicant might be denied after an application is submitted:

1) The applicant's credit check may reveal a poor credit history and thus, a bad risk for the co-op.

2) The applicant may not be making enough income to be relied upon to pay their monthly maintenance on time and in full

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On May5 shareholders of co-op will protesting. Board avoid to do election for new board.
They want to be for life. On our letters HPD not respond. What else shareholders can to do, for election. Protest will be on: 156-11 Aguilar Ave, Flushing NY,11367

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Glenn - I suggest you start a whole new topic thread for your question. Right now it's buried in the middle of a thread discussing rejecting a new purchaser and I don't thiddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddnk very many people will see it in its current location.

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Coincidentally, Cooperator News just published an interesting article on this subject at https://cooperatornews.com/article/the-board-approval-process

Some quotes:

"Boards can demand troves of personal information from buyers, and can approve or deny a purchase for just about any reason--or no reason at all--but they may not engage in illegal discriminatory practices."

"Unusual demands aside, most boards are primarily looking at the purchaser’s financial profile when assessing their application. Can this person afford to buy the apartment and cover the monthly carrying costs? Do they have the resources to pay a special assessment, should one be necessary?"

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Re-measuring a building - Bill Apr 26, 2023

Anybody have any experience having their building re-measured for the purpose of having their property tax lowered (or any other reason)?
I understand that the square footage recorded by the Department of Finance under the Notice of Property Value can be way off, especially with older buildings.
Are there any firms that you know of that can do this (according to Department of Finance guidelines) and know what they are doing?
Thanks!

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Building square footage is only one of many factors the Dept of Finance uses when calculating building Assessed Valuation. What you need to do is contact an attorney who specializes in lowering overall building valuations. They're called Tax Certiorari attorneys.

If your managing agent already works with Tax Certiorari attorney or they can't help you find a one, I can recommend the one we've used for at least 15 years. Tax Certiorari attorneys are paid a percentage of the amount they lower your R/E taxes so there are no up-front fees.

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Late Fees for Tenants - Alexis Apr 24, 2023

Hi - Do you have policies around late fees for tenants who don't pay maintnance or other charges? If so, what is reasonable? Thanks!

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My old co-op used to charge $75 a month as a late fee if you missed your maintenance. I know they didn’t do this during the pandemic.

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We have just started back up with our Late fees since the Pandemic. After the 15th of the month, your maintenance is late. We assess a $50.00 late fee everytime the pymt is late across the board.

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Management's Involvement in Board Elections - Gouverneur Gardens Apr 20, 2023

Should Management be involved in moderating meetings and distributing election information throughout the complex? Using the corporation's websites, services such as "Building Link," Or should it be an appointed Election Chairperson, the corporate attorney, or even an Election Services such as Honest Ballot? In a Mitchell Lama Cooperative.

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Its really up to the board. But I would give it to the manager to handle. It is what they are there for. I heard good things about honest ballot.

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Eboard Pushing Vote - Bob Apr 15, 2023

The eboard of my 16 unit, self-managed co-op has recently posted a vote via email. It has given 4 days for shareholders to vote on a wholly discretionary spending motion (landscaping) which would require a one time assessment. The motion will be considered passed if a majority within quorum are aye's.

This is the first time our co-op has voted on an significant matter via email. There are no rules on how a motion by email is to be conducted. We did have an email vote in the past, but a majority of outstanding shares was required for the vote to pass, rather than a majority of quorum (the eboard didn't want that one to pass, but they do want this one to pass).

The eboard has transmitted the vote via blind carbon copy. I cannot see who recieved emails, I am not able to engage in discussion with my fellow shareholders, I am not aware of any issues they may have raised and they are not aware of my objections,. I cannot see who voted or how they voted.

Little information has been given to the shareholders. No information on what will be planted, replacement costs, et cetera, nor has an alternative been given. This is very different than what we have done in the past wherein information and alternatives have always been provided.

I have raised my objections with the eboard and they have been ignored. What recourse do I have here?

Thank you for any help you can give on this.

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I was on my co-op's board for about 6 years (I later moved to a condo, before the covid pandemic changed the way boards communicate). I can't imagine a board getting away with this, without better informing shareholders. I do not understand how you cannot communicate with your fellow shareholders. Since your building is self-managed and there are only 16 units, can't you knock on your neighbor's doors and express to them your objections? Also, don't you also have access to your neighbors' emails, so that those you don't speak with in person you can communicate with by email? Also assuming when you say "eboard" you mean the actual board of your co-op. I'm sure someone else who has expertise with "e-boards" can better address your issues. Just wanted to share my thoughts. Good luck!

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I was able to speak to some of my fellow shareholders, others by email, but my list was incomplete.

As an update, only 3 votes were cast, presumably from the eboard members pushing for this, and thus they could not make quorum. So they decided to reschedule the vote a week from now to try and pass it again.

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Well, at least the motion seems unpopular in your co-op. It sounds like the board won't have the votes to get it passed.

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The board probably won't get it passed, but this won't be the last time they try to do an end run.

I suggest you start planning for the future. Do something proactive like creating a private group on Facebook for shareholders or condo owners only. Discuss, notify, and advocate for anything you need to do without any board oversight.

Be aware that there will be expenses and you'll spend more time than you can imagine. The end result is much more transparency in the governance of your board or HOA.

This is just a very rough napkin plan and will require a lot of pre-planning and modifications.

Good luck!

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