New York's Cooperative and Condominium Community

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KIPS BAY

A Mitchell-Lama Co-op Keeps Its Options Open

Written by Bill Morris on January 16, 2019

Kips Bay, Manhattan

Co-op can go to market rate without paying prepayment penalty.

Bookkeeping Goes High Tech

Written by Lisa Prevost on October 16, 2017

Kips Bay, Manhattan

Boards can say goodbye to stacks of invoices with a simple click.

A Kips Bay co-op gets a boost from cogen, while a Rockaways co-op scores a record block grant.

Kips Bay Co-op Finds Energy Nirvana

Written by Jennifer V. Hughes on January 13, 2017

Kips Bay

Cogen brings energy savings without depleting reserves or inflating maintenance.

Boards need to ease the inconvenience for all residents.

Managing agent Maria Auletta of FirstService Residential recalls walking into the boiler room of the 162-unit Tracy Towers at 245 East 24th Street about a year ago. She was the new agent for the building and was floored to see such a clean boiler room. "It says a lot about the leadership of the building," she observes. "I've been in property management for ten years and most boiler rooms are average at best. They have to be somewhat clean — but at Tracy Towers, you can eat off the floor. It's that impressive." In comparison, Auletta remembers walking through a boiler room at a different building and seeing water bugs so big that she left the room. "No one wants to go into [those types of] boiler rooms," she observes. Because shareholders rarely see the boiler room, it can easily become a mess. In fact, its appearance can reflect on how the super does his job.

A doorman who helped save the life of an elderly tenant trapped in her apartment for two days with a broken hip. A porter who collapsed on smoke-filled stairs after having helped get residents out of their apartments during a fire. An engineer and former New York City Department of Buildings inspector who became the super for a six-building, 1,700-apartment complex. They and 18 other city residential and office workers each took home a prize as the best in their categories in the 2014 Building Service Workers Awards.

The best step in a condo / co-op board can take to keep your building from becoming an illegal hotel — with absentee owners renting their apartments week-to-week or month-to-month via Airbnb and other short-term accommodation websites — is prevention, a topic Habitat covered earlier this month. But what do you do once you have a parade of non-vetted strangers living next to you and sharing hallways and elevators with your spouses and kids? You're not helpless. There are steps you can take.

Mark Andermanis, board president of the subsidized East Midtown Plaza co-op in Manhattan, and his wife Sandra have three kids. Normally that means New York City can't give them a four-bedroom co-op since those are reserved for families of six. But the Andermanis family got one anyway. Not only that but they jumped ahead of another family on the waiting list for a larger apartment. And yet a court decided unanimously that the line-jumper could keep it. What's wrong with this picture?

Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. This week: Seriously? Mark Andermanis, board president of the subsidized Mitchell-Lama co-op East Midtown Plaza, jumps ahead of others to score a four-bedroom apartment — reserved for families of six, which, additionally, he does not have —  and when he won't budge, an alert shareholder sues him. But he gets to keep the primo place because the shareholder doesn't have standing to sue ... and while the co-op board, perhaps, could, here's the thing: He's the co-op board president! Does this sound proper or right to anyone ethical? The good guys do win one, though, when a developer who refused to fix a Long Island condominium complex is permanently barred from selling condos. That's something, at least.

And then there's another reason for condo and co/op boards to be wary of Airbnb....

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