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Coop Living

Coops offer an attractive opportunity for those looking to purchase a home but who are not looking to take on all the responsibilty of maintaining a home. Coops are often managed by a Professional Management Firm that hires a team to deal with the upkeep of the building or Coop community. There is a Board of Directors that is comprised of Coop Owners and Building management. The Board of Directors conduct interviews of prospective Coop Owners and determines if the applicant is eligible to purchase a unit.

Bronx Coops and the Interview Process

So you found the perfect Bronx coop and you are excited about the prospect of owning your own coop. You have done your homework and have toured a few homes and have come to the determination that Coops are a great choice because of the ability to own your own home with a management company that will maintain the building.

But you've heard from friends, colleagues and others that Coop interviews can be tough, invasive and can kill a deal. So how do you prepare for your interview? That is where a Realtor steps in and can help you prepare for the interview process.

First let me clarify some myths about Coops. The way a Coop is structured is different than standard home ownership. You are actually considered a Shareholder in a corporation. Home ownership is great, but the question is how much responsibility do you want to have?

  • Shoveling the Sidewalk?
  • Mowing the lawn?
  • Fixing the roof?

These are just a few of the responsibilities you as a home owner will have.

Coops are different

Coops are structured differently. Unlike Condos and Single family homes, Coops are not owned as individual units but as shares in the Coop Corporation. When it comes to the monthly common charges or maintenance, Coops tend to be higher than Condos but only because the Property taxes of the building are spread to all the share holders. Example; This means that if a Condo has a common charge of $500 per month you still need to factor in property taxes. If a Coop has a maintenance charge of $700 per month, the taxes are already included with the charges. This leads to a lot of confusion as people gnerally think Coops are more expensive.

Bronx Coops Interview Process Continued

Some Coop Boards are known for their tough interview process. They need to balance the interest of the current share holders of the building and the potential new share holders that they welcome in. That is why Coop Boards have earned the distinction of being as tough or tougher than Job Interviews.

Here are some tips that can help you prepare for your Interview process.

  • Being Invited to be Interviewed: The board needs to interview prospective share holders to determine if the applicant should or shouln't be allowered the opportunity to join the Coop. The process can be either formal or informal. This is when you need to shine. Prepare to make an Amazing First Impression.
  • Dress for the Occasion and be Early: You should treat a Coop Board interview as if you were going on a Job interview for your dream job. After all, you are hopefully going to purchase your dream home.
  • Prepare for a lack of privacy: Coop Boards have the liberty to ask very detailed questions. They obviously can not engage in practices that violate Fair Housing Regulations, but they can dig deep for information. Do not take it personal and do not get defensive. Remember, this is like a job interview.
  • Understand your Application: This key is important because if you are truthful in your application there shoud be no hessitency in your responses. Obviously you might get nervous and that is why you should review and practice your answers about your application.
  • Who takes the Lead?: If you and your significant other, freind or family member will be buying the property together, then prepare in advance who will take the lead on answering the questions.
  • Don't over sell yourself: Less is more. Answer the questions but don't go over board. You don't want to ramble on and give the board a reason to deny your application.
  • Don't volunteer information: Let them ask you a specific question and your response should be specific to that question. You never know what will turn them off towards you so be concise.
  • Don't ask Questions: They are interviewing you. You aren't interviewing them. Remember, they hold the power to accept or deny your application.
  • Stay positive. Don't rush to the interview and make sure you are well rested and focused. Shine like you've never shined before. But don't sweat.
  • Don't expect an answer right away: Normally the board will have to convene in private and discuss the fine points of your application and interview. Your Real Estate Agent will follow up and find out after what the decision was. You will also be notified by call and or mail.

These are just some of the steps you should take in preparing for your interview. Strategize with your Real Estate Agent about how to prepare for your interview.

If you are in the market to purchase a Bronx Coop or home, please feel free to contact us and we can help you take Private tours of available properties. You can also use our Search Properties Widget on the right sidebar of this page.

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