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January 2017 Archives

When do home buyers and sellers need a real estate attorney?

Most people who are buying or selling a home in New York City don't need an attorney. A knowledgeable realtor should be able to guide you through the transaction. However, in some cases, it's wise to have an experienced New York real estate attorney to help avoid legal or financial repercussions later on.

Be careful whom you do business with, not every vendor is honest

You have picked out a space for your new yoga studio, now you need to contact vendors for equipment, fixtures, and items for resale. Choosing the right vendor is very important when you start a new business. You want to do business with people that are reliable. The last thing you need is for a vendor to tell you he or she cannot deliver your order at the very last minute.

What does the interest rate hike mean for New York real estate?

Anyone who has an adjustable-rate mortgage knows that even a small change to interest rates can mean a big change to your monthly mortgage payments. Shortly before the end of last year, the Federal Reserve raised interest rates for the first time in awhile -- by .25 percent. The Fed has suggested that another rate hike could come this year.

Don't give your management company control over vendors

Recently we discussed the potential problems of hiring a condo or co-op board director as a vendor. It's important, however, for the board to maintain control of who can hire vendors as well as contractors and not to give your management company authority to hire someone without the board's approval. It's also essential for someone on the board to monitor the invoices as well as the actual work on a regular basis.

Why shouldn't you hire a board member as a vendor?

It's not unusual for condominium or co-op board members or directors to have careers that would make them a good candidate to be hired as a vendor by the board. For example, some may want to act as a property manager for foreclosed units or for units belonging to New Yorkers who winter in Florida or spend extended periods away from home on business.

Luxury residences in New York no longer as popular

A New York City real estate agency recently published its end-of-year report on our city's residential real estate market, and the news doesn't appear to be good for those involved in luxury properties. As the president of Olshan Realty, Inc. said, we are no longer in the "golden years of new condo development," which she describes as 2013 through 2015.

What are your options when a neighbor cuts or kills your tree?

In a perfect world, neighbors would always peacefully resolve their disputes. In the real world, however, things between neighbors can take a nasty turn with little provocation. Previously genial neighbors can become cold and passive-aggressive over minor things like the placement of a garbage bin or someone forgetting to mow their grass. Many times, the dispute that causes a neighborly rift may be over a tree.

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