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I’m buying into a new development, and it’s running late. When can I close on my apartment?

The old rule of thumb when buying new developments was to assume that the sales office’s estimate of closing were “optimistic” and to add three months.

Now, however, it’s gotten worse for two reasons. One is that as sales slow down, sales offices want to maintain a sunny face, so they won’t even admit to realities they might have copped to a couple of years ago. I am selling a client into a new development (I’m a real estate agent) and the building was under a stop work order. Despite this, the sales office is clinging to its prior forecast of “October-November” for completion, even as the construction guys on site are saying “January-February.”

The second reason is that with the recent and deplorable crane accidents, DOB is under tremendous scrutiny, so they’re giving a lot more care to signoffs. As a result, we’re seeing a bottleneck in the issuance of C of Os.

The delays are starting to hit buyers hard, because of course interest rates are moving against them, and therefore these apartments are costing more than they’d estimated.

Also, I don’t usually bang the drum for my profession. I generally figure that people who don’t want to use agents, shouldn’t use agents, and that my clients who want good service will find me.


However, now I’m going to make noise for a minute. Two years ago, when I started working in New York, I met an entire breed of buyer who said, “hey, real estate agents are useless, why should I pay you for advice when I can see an apartment on the Internet and buy directly from the sales office?”

At the time, I had many answers to that question, but now I have one more: the current climate. A good broker will walk you through possible scenarios and their risks, just as a good lawyer will. How many of those buyers had the current scenario of spectacularly delayed closings and rising interest rates explained to them by those smiling people in the sales office?

ali r.
{downtown broker}

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Posted in For Buyers 12 years ago at 7:36 am.

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