New York's Cooperative and Condominium Community

Habitat Magazine Business of Management 2021



“The building is solid,” says Larry Hohlt, the retired lawyer who also heads up the nine-member board at what he calls a “classic prewar” — this 107-unit East Village co-op.

For proof, he points to a worker who tried to drill through a wall – only to break his drill bit on the brick that lay beneath the surface. “They built these buildings very, very well,” he says of the Depression-era property. “The building aged gracefully.”

When a prospective buyer wants to view the minutes of a condo or co-op board before purchasing an apartment, it's important to take the request the seriously. "If the board declines," says David L. Berkey, a partner at Gallet Dreyer & Berkey, "I think that can detract from the saleability of the apartment or may affect the pricing,"

Most boards release an edited version of minutes, or a summary, that leaves out specific details on a variety of topics, such as financial issues, potential litigation, and debates over purchases and contracts before they are made. Very few boards go to the other extremes: detailing and releasing everything from the meeting in their minutes or releasing nothing at all.

How My Co-op Board Created a 10-Year Capital-Improvement Plan That Works

Written by Larry Hohlt, board president, 40-50 E. 10th Street, Manhattan on April 11, 2013

40-50 E. 10th Street, Greenwich Village, Manhattan

My wife and I lived in a house in Brooklyn Heights for almost 30 years before moving to 40-50 E. 10th Street nearly 12 years ago. It's a great building, with a wide range of residents, a healthy assortment of children. Old-world charm and new-world amenities: two private gardens and a cardiovascular exercise room. It is also walking distance to both the East and West Village. To keep the property sound and attractive, two years ago the co-op board created a 10-year capital plan.

Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. This week, long faces on Long Island, as a the FBI arrests two men they allege ran a Ponzi scheme at their Montauk resort containing over 100 co-op apartments. Another kind of white-collar criminal may be robbing you when you apply for a mortgage. And is it criminal to pay $80,000 for parking space at a car condominium? Plus, the co-op board of The Cambridge House sued the City to get Citi Bike racks in front of its building removed — and now the City says it's above the law and the courts have to stay out!

Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. More trouble for those involved in illegal short-term rentals, with a major real-estate agent involved. Plus, advice for dealing with co-op board rejection, how to gracefully decline writing a recommendation letter, second-class citizenship at luxury condos, and co-op capers with beer heiress Daphne Guinness and Academy Award-nominee Jessica Chastain (at right). And for co-op / condo boards, we've analyses of Fletcher v. Dakota and of the easing of FHA condo rules.

Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. This week, a co-op claims victory, sort of, against Citi Bike, a condo owner will only accept Bitcoin and how hot is Long Island City? Plus, for condo and co-op boards, there's more on Intro 188, which would regulate co-op admissions more tightly, as well as a big fine against a condo's illegal hoteler and let's all have fun with quirky house rules!

Bob Bischoff wasn’t surprised when he heard the news: a significant portion of his building needed to be “skinned.”

If that sounds major, that’s because it is. Skinning is a labor-intensive, time-consuming procedure. The first layer brick is removed, and a layer of mortar is added, which creates a smooth surface. Then waterproofing is applied, and a new brick is installed. You don’t want to “re-skin” a building unless you absolutely have to.

Every night, Zoltan Papp would watch the sun go down from his office at a 100-unit Greenwich Village cooperative and the floodlights in the backyard flicker on. They would stay on all night, casting chiaroscuro shadows in the empty outdoor space until a timer switched them off at dawn the next morning.

Needless to say, the co-op board found monthly electricity bill an eyesore. With lights on around the clock in the lobby, corridors, elevators and staircases of 51 Fifth Avenue — familiar as the exterior location for Paul Reiser and Helen Hunt's home on Mad About You — it was obvious to the building superintendent no one had ever seriously looked at what the building could do to eliminate the unnecessary electricity costs.

Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. This week, what can co-op and condo boards do about the illegal hotel one of the residents is running? Plus, we show you the the coolest construction netting in the world, and a resource for your own urban canvas when a netting need arises. And mother of mercy, is this the start of RICO? For co-op / condo buyers / sellers, a lawyer says what your lawyer should do for you when you buy or sell. And John Legend is selling his Bowery condo in order to buy on Broome.

Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. This week, they do love their cigarettes in Queens, a Long Islander may face eviction for burning the wrong kind of firewood and Petey the Pig's "parents" are trying to sell their co-op apartment and fine a more swine-friendly place. There's a Harlem co-op / condo expo April 6-7. And where the wild things aren't is in the late Maurice Sendak's co-op, now up for sale. Plus, for condo and condo and co-op boards, we've advice on mediation.

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