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Frequently Asked Questions:

What's the difference between a co-op and a condo?

 

Not much. A building is a building is a building. When buildings converted from rental to ownership, the sponsor or previous landlord had the option to convert to cooperative or condominium ownership. If the landlord wanted to go condo, the landlord would have to pay off any existing mortgage on the building. If not, the existing mortgage or a new wrap-around mortgage would exist on the building and therefore it would be a co-op upon conversion.

 

So, the major difference is the co-op has an underlying mortgage, whereas the condo has no building mortgage. Therefore, for a co-op you would get a loan from the bank to secure the shares, and for a condo you would get a mortgage.

Other differences are as follows:
 
Co-op
 
Condo
 
Harder to rent
Easier to rent
 
Lower closing cost
Higher closing cost
 
Stable tenancy
Higher turnover
 
Real estate taxes included
Real Estate taxes not included
 


What about pet policy!

 

Almost every building lease states "NO PETS ALLOWED," even if pets are allowed.

The no-pets clause is basically for dogs, even if dogs are permitted (5% of buildings only). Some buildings once allowed dogs but no longer do so. So, when you see tenants with dogs, it certainly does not mean that dogs are allowed for new tenants. In many cases, when an existing pet dies, the tenant cannot get a new pet.

 

Other pets, like cats, birds, fish, etc. are probably also not permitted, but, since they are in the apartment, nobody is going to know. Please keep in mind that dogs bark, need to be walked every day, and therefore can easily be noticed. But, unfortunately the lease says pets, and not only dogs, are not allowed, so as not to seem discriminatory.

 

So, if you have a dog, be very careful. If you have another pet, you should be fine. Rarely will you be able to get permission in writing  for any pet, even fish.

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