Navigating the co-op board
by Jacques Ambron
Nov 04, 2020 | 1802 views | 0 0 comments | 180 180 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Jacques Ambron is executive director of sales for Brown Harris Stevens Forest Hills, LLC.
Jacques Ambron is executive director of sales for Brown Harris Stevens Forest Hills, LLC.
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Q. I am about to sign a contract on a co-op apartment. I always hear some scary things about boards and the application process. Can you tell me whether I should expect any problems?

A. Over the years, I have had many experiences dealing with co-op boards and application processes. There are several things a board looks at to determine if they will accept you.

The first is your debt-to-income ratio. This is calculated as follows: Add your mortgage amount plus your maintenance plus any other debt you may have, divided by your income. This will be a percentage. Boards generally look for a 28 percent debt-to-income ratio.

The second aspect that is scrutinized is the liquid assets. At a minimum, they should cover one to two years’ worth of the monthly carrying costs (mortgage and maintenance).

The final piece of the picture is your credit. Usually a score of 700 or better is required, but this isn’t a hard and fast rule. Boards will sometimes accept lower income if the assets are very good, and lower assets if the income is over the minimum requirement.

Since you will also need to assemble a number of documents for the actual application, the best course is to discuss the whole process with an experienced real estate professional who can help you piece together all the parts of the puzzle.

Please send your real estate-related questions to jambron@bhsusa.com.
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