Showing posts from 2015


Legal Line Question of the Week   Flip Taxes I am representing the owner of a co-op apartment that is  in the process of selling her apartment.   The co-op  board has just implemented a flip tax (the "Flip Tax")  and the seller is concerned that the Flip Tax is  going to decrease the value of her apartment.   What are the steps that a co-op board must follow  in order to implement a Flip Tax? Will the seller have  to pay the Flip Tax when she sells her apartment? A Flip Tax is a fee that a co-op charges (usually to the  seller) upon the sale of the apartment. The general  purpose of the Flip Tax is to increase revenue for  the co-op without raising monthly maintenance fees.  The origin of the Flip Tax dates back to the early days  of co-op conversions when investors were buying  co-ops (with no intention of living in the co-op)  and then flipping" the apartment for a profit.  The Flip Tax was a way for the co-op to get a shar

The New RESPA Rules on Mortgage Lending

THE DAY THE CLOSINGS STOOD STILL   As of October 3, 2015 the federal government enacted new RESPA rules on all mortgage lending which will have a dramatic impact on closings, the affect of which will not be felt for approximately two months or when these transactions are scheduled to close. The TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosures (TRID) system, overseen by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), was implemented this past  Saturday . Starting now, lenders will use two new forms to explain the details of mortgages, a loan estimate which must be given to a borrower no later than the third business day after the borrower applies and a final  closing disclosure  which borrowers must receive three business days prior to closing. The HUD-1 Settlement Statement which has been the traditional document issued by settlement agents at closings throughout the country is now a thing of the past. Replacing the final truth-in-lending statement and the HUD-1 Settlement Statement will b

A Beautiful, Handy Guide to New York's Most Iconic Buidings

Drawing / painting / photographing  the buildings of New York City is a popular (and pretty ) hobby, and the latest architectural artistry from  Pop Chart Lab   distills the streetscape  down to  54 significant structures , from local monuments like the Washington Square Arch to the world-famous  One World Trade Center  to the historic  Plaza Hotel . Called " Splendid Structures of New York City ," the poster orders the buildings by height and includes each building's address, year of construction, and architectural style. A few things to note: Pop Chart Lab used each building's  full height, including spires , so One World Trade Center is listed at 1,792 feet, not 1,776 (same goes for the Empire State Building and other skyscrapers on the chart). Additionally, the construction date is the  year construction started  on the building. "We decided to go with the date of construction since some buildings undergo constant or lengthy renovations/additions,"

Q4 2014 REAL ESTATE MARKET REPORT - Rutenberg - The Smart Brokers

Q4 2014 REAL ESTATE MARKET REPORT           The Federal Reserve Beige Book reports that construction and real estate activity expanded across the country in the fourth quarter of 2014, and banks re­ported steady demand for consumer and residential mortgages. New York City ’s co-op and condo market showed continued strength at the end of 2014 that has seamlessly carried over into the new year. On the rental side , rents in Manhattan and Brooklyn are up five percent from a year ago while Queens rents have been fairly steady. Luckily for all sectors and boroughs, multi-family construction remains robust.             Lean inventory and strong demand were consistent themes when discuss­ing an increase in New York City average sales prices for 2014. In a November report, Streeteasy noted that Manhattan ’s inventory was “nearly 20 percent beneath a five-year monthly average.” REBNY also alluded to this in its most recent report, which notes that New York ’s residential sale

Legal Question: UCC-1 Filing Requirements and Co-ops

I am a real estate salesperson and I was recently at a co-op closing which was delayed because the UCC-1 filing statement was incorrect due to a change in the law relating to UCC-1 filings. Can you please explain what a UCC-1 is and how the law has changed? When a purchaser buys a co-op apartment and is also obtaining a loan, the bank that is making the loan will file a Uniform Commercial Code financing statement (the “UCC-1”). The UCC-1: (i) creates a lien against the co-op purchaser’s shares and proprietary lease (this is similar to a mortgage in a real property transaction), (ii) is filed in the county clerk’s office where the co-op is located and (iii) gives notice to the public that the bank has a lien against the co-op purchaser’s shares and proprietary lease. In order to file the UCC-1, the bank must follow certain rules set forth in the Uniform Commercial Code (the “Code”).  Recently there was a revision to the Code regarding the way that the purchaser’s name appears on th

NYC's Best New Architecture, From the High Line to One WTC

it's time to make up a bunch of awards and hand them out to the most deserving people, places and things in the real estate, architecture and neighborhood universes of New York City! Yep, it's time for the  11th Annual Curbed Awards ! Up now: the best of New York City's new architecture. [Photo by Iwan Ban/the High Line] Award for the Overall Best New Addition to New York City The third and final leg of  the High Line  opened in September, completing a 15-year process that completely transformed what was one a neglected elevated rail line. The James Corner-designed project had been lauded around the world—and in New York—and it has become one of the city's biggest attractions. No matter what you think of the tourists crowding the walkways, the High Line is a beautiful space and there's no denying that it deserves the praise. [56 Leonard by Field Condition] The Fun to Watch Rise Award The coming years will see a fantastic variety of buildings that break