Guide to Selling Manhattan Real Estate
To sell a home in a timely manner, it’s important to have a solid understanding of the entire selling process and follow best practices.
Here are some guidelines to consider when selling Manhattan real estate:
- Ensure that your home is clean and in excellent condition, and add welcoming touches such as fresh flowers.
- Allow your agent to show your house at times when the outdoor conditions highlight your property’s best features.
- Make arrangements for your pets to be elsewhere during showings.
- If you’re selling a condominium or co-op, ask the managing agent for a copy of all applicable rules and regulations.
- Obtain important documents such as financials, the prospectus, and the offering plan from the managing agent before listing your property.
- Enlist the services of a real estate attorney with a proven track record to help you navigate the legal aspects of selling your home.
How to Negotiate
The process of bidding for a property commences when a buyer submits an offer or a bid, which can be communicated orally or in writing via their real estate agent. Upon presenting their offer, the buyer(s) will provide details of their qualifications. As the property seller, you have the choice of either accepting the offer or initiating negotiations by presenting a counteroffer.
If there are multiple bids, your real estate agent will assist you in evaluating them. In this scenario, it is important to consider not only the price and terms but also the buyer’s qualifications in terms of their ability to finalize the deal. Several rounds of negotiations may be required to arrive at a mutually agreeable closing date, price, and terms.
The bidding and negotiating process concludes once you agree to the full scope of an offer.
Contract Stage Details
Once you accept an offer, your real estate attorney will start working on the contract of sale. Meanwhile, the buyer’s attorney will typically conduct a due diligence process, which involves requesting important documents such as the building’s bylaws, financial statement, and offering plan.
If the buyer is satisfied with the contract’s terms after reviewing it with their attorney, they will sign it and make a deposit equal to 10% of the sale price. Once your attorney receives the signed contract and deposit, they will have you sign it as well.
The buyer’s deposit will be held in escrow until the closing date of the sale.
Acquiring Board Approval
Before the closing stage, your real estate agent will request several documents from the buyer, including letters of reference, brokerage and bank statements, tax returns, and signed financial statements, as well as the application and contract of sale. The buyer’s agent will assist in gathering these documents and putting them together in a package for submission to the building’s managing agent.
The package will then undergo a review process which may require additional information from the buyer. In the case of a co-op, the buyer may also be subject to an interview with the board. Although it may take some time for the interview to be scheduled, the managing agent usually confirms board approval within a few days after the interview.
What to Expect During the Closing Process of Manhattan Real Estate
After receiving approval from the board, the final step is closing the sale. It’s common for the buyer to request a final property inspection just before closing to ensure appliances and fixtures are in working condition.
The closing is usually held in the managing agent’s office with the presence of managing agents, attorneys, banks, buyers, and sellers. The contract usually allows for a delay of up to 30 days from the exact closing date, considering the involvement of multiple parties.
In Manhattan, a standard commission of 6% is charged by brokers and a minimum of $2,500 by the seller’s attorney. Apart from this, there may be additional fees like New York City transfer tax and managing agent fees that you should review with your attorney before signing the contract, regardless of whether it’s a sale of a condominium, townhouse, or co-op.