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Parent-Child Purchases Are Becoming More Difficult In City Co-Ops

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Buying a city apartment can be a complicated process, and now some parents looking to buy apartments for, or with their children are finding some new hurdles to jump over. NY1's Real Estate reporter Jill Urban filed the following report.

As if finding an apartment to buy in this market is not difficult enough, now parents looking to purchase for or with their children may find a new hurdle.

"It's always been very common for parents to buy with or for their children in co-ops throughout the city, but now co-ops are getting much more restrictive," says Douglas Heddings, the president of the Heddings Property Group. "They are implementing more rules and making it much more difficult for parents to buy with or for their children."

Heddings says many co-ops are now looking to shift the dynamic of the building, both for the community and for financial security. Many are looking to lock in buyers with a long employment history, something many young college and graduate students do not have.

In some cases, parents are finding new rules to comply with.

"Some of the bigger issues are a lot of co-ops are now insisting that the parents be on the stock and lease certificate as owners of the co-op. A lot of parents balk at that," Heddings says. "The second thing we're seeing is that parents are being asked to either guarantee maintenance payments or to put two or three years of maintenance in escrow, or possibly even both."

If the parents need to be on the stock and lease certificate, that means a full purchase application with full financial disclosure and even a board interview, something that does not sit well with many.

"When parents who have a lot of money are asked for full financial disclosure or to appear at a board interview, they can be offended at times. And if they show they are offended in a board interview, it will almost always result in a board rejection," Heddings says.

This is happening throughout the city, according to Heddings, but he is particularly seeing it a lot now in buildings near colleges and universities, like Columbia and NYU.

Heddings says buyers and sellers dealing with a parent/child purchase should speak directly to a building's managing agent to fully understand the rules, which in this climate could change at any time.

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