New York's Cooperative and Condominium Community

Habitat Magazine Insider Guide



Eleanor Selling, an anthropologist by training and former trade-desk manager at J.P. Morgan Chase, has been part of the renovation committee at 5 Riverside Drive in Manhattan since 2011. The former board president recently sat down with Habitat Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Carol J. Ott, to discuss leadership qualities and lessons learned on the job.

The co-op where I live, 5 Riverside Drive, is a wonderful place. A classic Art Deco high-rise designed by the team of Boak and Paris in 1937, the 109-unit co-op sits on the corner of 73rd Street and Riverside Drive. The shareholders love the proximity to Riverside Park and enjoy the wide vistas of the Hudson River. The building, which went co-op in 1966, has round-the-clock service and a live-in superintendent, laundry, storage and a bike room.

With those attractions, however, come challenges, as we learned when the real estate market took off. Ten percent of our apartments were sold within three years, many for between $1 million and $2 million. A number of shareholders submitted larger and more complex renovation plans than we'd ever handled.

Ask the Experts

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Learn all the basics of NYC co-op and condo management, with straight talk from heavy hitters in the field of co-op or condo apartments

Professionals in some of the key fields of co-op and condo board governance and building management answer common questions in their areas of expertise

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