Written by Ronda Kaysen on April 04, 2013
In February, a 105-unit condominium near Ocean Parkway in Brooklyn saw its insurance premium spike by 30 percent to $44,000. A 148-unit condo on the Upper East Side of Manhattan watched its bill jump 10 percent, to nearly $72,000. And a doorman co-op in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, recently swallowed a 9 percent premium increase. Condos and co-ops across New York City are bracing for an expensive insurance market, as insurers raise rates for the first time in years.
No building seems immune. Even co-ops and condos that are fully insured and haven't filed claims are watching their rates jump by as much as 9 percent and their deductible limits rising. Other buildings are discovering that their carrier simply won't cover them anymore.
Written by Patrick Niland on July 26, 2012
It may be scant comfort to know that almost all small co-ops encounter this problem. One reason comes from the lender's perspective. It takes the same amount of work, and sometimes more, to do a small loan as it does to do a big one. As loan size drops, it begins to make no economic sense to do a deal. This is especially true for large lenders.
Written by Jennifer V. Hughes on December 31, 1969
March 22, 2010 — A New York City sales-tax break that helped to make electricity more affordable is going away August 1. That's when customers of independent ESCOs — energy service companies — will have to pay the same 4.5 percent sales tax on the delivery side of your utility bill that Con Ed customers already pay. That's on top of the 4.5 percent city we currently pay on the supply side of both ESCO and Con Ed bills.
How much will it cost co-ops and condos? For one large co-op — Amalgamated Warbasse Houses in Brooklyn, a five-building, 2,585-unit co-op that went with an ESCO in 2007 — the additional taxes total an estimated $320,000 a year. If you want to do the math for your own building, that's an average of an additional $124 an apartment.
Written by Ronda Kaysen on February 21, 2013
Set on a quiet street opposite Sunset Park in Brooklyn, the 1920s vintage Sun Garden Homes, a 70-unit, working-class co-op, installed a photovoltaic solar-power system in November on its sprawling, 12,500-square-foot roof. We've written about how the co-op board came to the decision to go solar, a move expected to save 30 percent on energy costs. The next step: How do condo and co-op boards pay for it?
Written by Ronda Kaysen on February 07, 2013
The view from the roof of Sun Garden Homes, a 70-unit co-op in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, includes unobstructed sights of Green-Wood Cemetery, the Statue of Liberty and the Manhattan skyline. But it is the roof itself that is the most remarkable: It is covered in solar panels. Sun Garden Homes installed the 50-kilowatt photovoltaic system in November, the first step in a long-term plan to reduce the building's energy usage dramatically. The building plans to overhaul its metering system, insulate and repaint its roof, improve boiler controls, and upgrade lighting, windows and toilets. The co-op anticipates the property's energy usage will drop by 30 percent from the solar and metering project alone.
February 11, 2013
Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. This week, a Long Island co-op struggle to finance common-area repair, not covered by FEMA, after superstorm Sandy; a condo super in Greenpoint risks blowing the place up; and rich folk got dem pied-à-terre blues. For co-op and condo boards, we've two tales of illegal hoteling — both with hilarious, albeit nefarious, behavior by the apartment owners. Plus, the latest amenity: onsite well-being programs.
Written by Paul Hachmeyer, Board Treasurer, 7201 Owners Corp., Brooklyn on February 14, 2013
When someone brings up continuing education, we may think of going back to school and taking a class on something outside our career — maybe photography, or cooking. For a real education and experience, become a co-op or condo board member. I can't begin to say how much I've learned over my 20 years as co-op board treasurer at an 86-unit building in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. But I'll try to describe some of the issues and solutions.
February 04, 2013
Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. This week, schools rent space in a co-op and a condo, easing those buildings' upkeep costs, and a lawsuit at a Midtown East co-op says a family has turned a hallway into their personal playroom. Plus, advice on co-op admissions interviews, how to increase your apartment's value, and Nets star Deron Williams bounces into a new condo.
December 31, 2012
Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. This week, politicians continue to promise tax abatement. Still haven't passed it yet, though. Plus, an upscale Brooklyn condo forbids smoking in apartments, gardening space is the newest amenity and fans make pilgrimage to The Odd Couple's co-op apartment building in the wake of Jack Klugman's death. Your co-op apartment building should be so revered, bubala.
Written by Frank Lovece on November 30, 2012
What's the buzz? In the case of Linda Cummings' one-bedroom condominium apartment at Foxwood Square in Staten Island, it was noise from the boiler room below her bedroom — a constant hum every October through May that was only matched, she says, by the overwhelming silence of a condo board that refused to correct the problem for over three years. And when it finally did so, says a sound engineer, it did it wrong. Why did this homeowner's pleas about noise fall on such deaf ears?
Co-op and condo board business broken down into bite-sized bits - 2 stories each week. Read now on all digital devices.
A free digital resource for co-op/condo board directors. Published twice a month. Read now on all digital devices.