Enhance Your Property

Here are some ideas for enhancing the ‘showing potential’ of your home when selling:

  • Remember: Most untrained buyers look at furnishings and décor before they see the fundamentals of the ‘space’. Furnishing an apartment well is a smart investment. Artwork can often substitute for a less impressive view.
  • Everything should be cleaned thoroughly.
  • Tidy up the place! Buyers get confused by clutter, and distracted from the positive elements about your space.
  • Have your windows professionally cleaned.
  • Dirty walls should be re-painted if possible.
  • Any signs of water damage, cracks or holes should be repaired. Cracked or broken windows or mirrors too!
  • Floor tiles and walls tiles should be re-grouted.
  • Will your home’s value increase if you renovate the kitchen and bathroom(s)? This needs to be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
  • How light is your home? Would additional lighting enhance the space? Increase the wattage of existing lights, if dark.
  • Scented candles help reduce odors. Bad odors distract buyers.
  • Fresh flowers or plants always make a difference. Window boxes with plantings enhance a bad view.
  • Sanding and re-finishing wood floors or removing/replacing worn carpeting could be a minor expense compared to the selling price gains.
  • Replace/remove items of furniture to improve the value image of the space. Renting an expensive chair could adjust the buyer’s eyes to the possibility that the space too is very expensive-looking.
  • Your doorbell should work perfectly (first impressions)
  • What can you do to enhance a bad, or no view… Learn trade secrets about ‘expanding’ space.
  • Replace light bulbs with incandescent light, preferably on dimmers….especially for the winter months. Fluorecent lighting is un-flattering.
  • Subtle addition of accessories to ‘warm’ up an apartment can be valuable.

The Selling Process

 Select a broker
The relationship you will have with your broker during the course of the sale can be very close: it is important to select a broker who not only provides you the most professional service and achieves the highest selling price (that closes!), but also one with whom you feel comfortable inter-acting with on a regular basis.
 Pricing the apartment
Meet with a professional broker who can give you all pertinent information regarding recent sales in the neighborhood, current competing listings, recent sales in your building, most current market trends, etc. The broker establishes a selling price that he or she feels comfortable achieving, and that you are comfortable selling for based on your specific time parameters. REMEMBER: the market determines what your property will ultimately sell for (either higher or lower than the asking price). It is therefore most important to select a broker who has access to the most far-reaching marketing systems to expose your listing to the widest possible audience.
 Listing
Establishing all the facts and figures surrounding your apartment, floor plans, photographs, etc, and SHARING the listing with all other brokerage companies, so that every professional broker is aware of the listing. The vast majority of apartments are sold with the co-operation of 2 brokers.
 Advertising
Selective, well targeted advertising is the key to success, letting as many appropriate buyers know about your listing. Your broker will identify the numerous options and how appropriate they are for your type of apartment.
 Showings
Either in the form of open houses, broker’s open houses or private appointments. Most showings are through private appointments.
 Negotiating an accepted offer
The strong techniques and mannerism of your broker can affect the selling price. Your broker will reach a meeting of minds between you (the seller) and the buyer. If you are selling a co-op, your broker will pre-screen the financial status of the prospective buyer to qualify their chances for passing the board. A strong offer from a financially weak buyer is often worthless.
 Executing the Contract of Sale
Your broker will co-ordinate the efforts of both lawyer’s and assist in the full execution of a contract.
 Board approval / Condo Application
Often, the broker’s most important work begins here, assisting the buyer (or monitoring and helping the buyer’s broker) in presenting their best possible Board Application Package (representing the buyer’s financial and personal credentials) for review by the board. Most better Condominiums have some type of Board approval process (waiver of right of first refusal). Virtually all co-ops have this process, which is much more comprehensive, and often stipulates minimum financial requirements to pass the board. Most board’s primary concern is whether the buyer has sufficient assets to continue paying their monthly maintenance in the event they were to lose their job or monthly salary.
 Closing
Once Board Approval/Waiver of right of first refusal has been granted by the Board of the building, a closing can be scheduled.

Closing Costs

For Condominiums

Broker:

6% of the selling price

Seller’s Attorney:

$ 1,500 – $ 5,000 +

Managing Agent fee:

$ 450.00 +

Move-out deposit:

$ 500 – 1,000.00 (sometimes re-funded)

New York City Transfer Tax:

1% of selling price up to $ 500,000.00 And 1.425% of price over $ 500,001.00 (Paid by the seller unless the seller is a sponsor or developer)

New York State Transfer Tax:

0.4% (paid by seller, unless the seller is a sponsor or developer)

Miscellaneous Title fees:

$ 100.00

Payoff Bank Attorney:

$ 300.00

For Co-operatives

Broker:

6% of the Selling price

Seller’s Attorney:

$ 1,250 – $ 5,000 +

Co-op Attorney:

$ 450.00

Flip Tax:

Varies from building to building (1% -3% of the selling price) paid to the building usually to beef up their cash reserves.

Stock Transfer Tax:

$ 0.05 per share

Move-Out deposit:

$ 500.00 + (sometimes re-funded)

New York City Transfer Tax:

$ 1% of price up to $ 500,000.00, AND 1.425% of the selling price over $ 500,001.00 (paid by the seller, except a Sponsor.) + $ 25.00 recording fee

New York State Transfer Tax:

0.4%

Payoff Bank Attorney:

$ 300.00

UCC-3 Filing Fee:

$ 20.00