NYC Property Management Info

The New York City Department of Finance has recently changed its application process for the Co-op and Condo Property Tax Abatement (“CCA”) for unit owners. Unit owners can now apply for the CCA by completing the Homeowner Tax Benefit Application (click here to download). The revised application now includes CCA in addition to other benefits, such as STAR.

The following groups can now apply using this form:

– Unit Owners who purchased their unit / shares by January 5, 2015 are eligible to apply for the 2015 / 2016 tax year (July 1, 2015 – June 30, 2016). The filing deadline for this tax period was March 16, 2015.

– Unit Owners who purchased their unit / shares after January 5, 2015 should apply for the 2016 / 2017 tax year when that application (the updated links in this post now point that new link).

Please note that to be eligible, you must must use the subject unit as a primary residence and you can not own more than three residential units in the co-op or condo development.

If the unit is owned by a business entity, such as an LLC or a sponsor, your unit is not eligible for the abatements from the city.

In order to apply for the Abatement, you can view and download the application at this link: http://www1.nyc.gov/assets/finance/downloads/pdf/payment_operations/exemptions_appl.pdf or you can call 311 and have the application mailed to you.

In addition, as a new policy that is in effect for 2015, an application will be given out at each closing for a new Shareholder or Unit Owner so that they may have the information as soon as they purchase a unit.

In January 2014, NYC enacted a new rule for those properties that had a retaining wall that is greater than 10-feet high and located on a public right of way. Local Law 37 of 2008 now dictates that all of those properties that fall into that category have their retaining walls inspected every five (5) years to determine if they are Safe, Safe with a Repair and Maintenance or Unsafe.

If you’re familiar with Local Law 11 for the facade, then you’ll be familiar with this as well. Depending on where your building is located, you will need to file in the year that is attributed to your borough.

2014: Bronx
2015: Manhattan
2016: Staten Island
2017: Queens
2018: Brooklyn

The DOB provides civil penalties of $1,000 per year for failure to file, plus $250 per month penalty until the property owner is in compliance. Failure to repair an unsafe condition carries a $1,000 per month fine until corrected.

We would recommend that all properties that are now required to inspect and file their properties talk to a local engineer that is qualified to perform the inspection and file on your behalf.

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Beginning on March 1, 2015, New York City has a new law on the books that will require residential buildings to post a “Housing Information Guide For Tenants and Owners” that will alert residents in both english and spanish that there is a “ABC’s of Housing” guide located on the HPD website at www.hpd.gov/hpd.

For buildings that don’t post these new notices in the common area (such as a vestibule or mail area), the building could be subject to a fine of $250 for the infraction. If you would like to grab the text of the new law, you can download our PDF by clicking here or by downloading via the PDF at the beginning of this post.

The Offering Plan of a Cooperative or Condominium is a huge book that is filed with the State at the time the Sponsor / Developer decide to offer their building up for sale to the open public. Being that it is so big, it’s often easy to get lost in the vastness of printed paper. For those looking to view the specifics of how many shares or what the percentage of common area ownership are in a particular unit, it could take while to narrow down the search if it is not known where this information is housed.
If you thumb through the beginning area of your Offering Plan in search of the specifics to either the unit that you own or that you are looking to purchase, the “Schedule A” will be one of the most important areas to verify ownership information. It is on that document that the apartment number, size (bedrooms and bathrooms), share count (% of common interest owned if a Condominium), original purchase price, approx. amount of the mortgage applicable to those shares and projected annual maintenance amounts. These amounts were essentially estimates at the time that the Offering Plan was filed with Attorney General, so it is possible that these amounts have since changed. It would be wise to check with either the Management company or the attorney to verify that these amounts are current and/or applicable to the unit in question.
We’re providing a sample Schedule A (click on this link) so that you can see the breakdown of the apartments and shares. Please note that this is in use for the building specific to this Schedule A and all others will vary accordingly.

Update on 1/15/15: On January 14, 2015, President Obama signed the bill that reauthorized TRIA for another six years, with a new expiration date of December 31, 2020. Although it was renewed, there are some revisions to the TRIA renewal program. These revisions include higher deductibles to insurers.

On December 26, 2007, the President signed into law the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2007 (Pub. L. 110-160, 121 Stat. 1839) [TRIPRA]. This signing extended the existing Program through December 31, 2014, a date that is fast approaching.

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Excel Bradshaw Management Group, LLC has been hired to oversee the professional property management of Smith St. Gardens, Inc., a 65-unit Cooperative located at 194 Smith Street in Freeport, NY. Effective February 1, 2015, Excel Bradshaw Management Group, LLC will oversee operations of the building and will work in concert with the building’s Board of Directors, building staff and residents to ensure a smooth transition. (more…)

New York City has some very specific snow removal rules for buildings within its boroughs. We’re concerned about snow removal from a few different standpoints; we want to sure ensure the safety of the residents, employees and passerby’s and we also want to limit the liability and potential exposure to lawsuit of our client buildings.

New York City’s Department of Sanitation requires that snow be removed no later than four (4) hours after the end of the snow fall or not later than 11:00AM, if the snow ended after 9:00PM the night before.

In addition, if the snow can’t be removed due to packed ice or other conditions, the building is allowed to place down cat litter, snow melt or a similar product for traction. Once the snow has melted or is readily able to be removed, we recommend that it is done so right away.

Snow is not permitted to be shoveled into the streets at any time. That practice is illegal. In addition, do not place snow on top of a fire hydrant. Those hydrants do need to be kept clear at all times.

Failure to abide by the rules can subject the building to a fine in the amount of $100 – $350 per infraction.

Keeping the sidewalks clear of snow and ice during and after a snowstorm will be of great benefit to the employees, residents and the general public.

Related Post: What are the Winter Heating Requirements?

New York State, as of December 3, 2014, is requiring that all current subleases acknowledge if there are or aren’t sprinklers in their respective units with a new Fire Sprinkler Acknowledgement Form (EBMG can provide you with a sample Acknowledgement, below). We are now going to include an Acknowledgement Form in all Cooperative sales and sublease applications (sublease only for Condos) for the new tenants to sign and will also be sending out an acknowledgement form to all residents that currently have a lease so that we have them on file.

This new code is for all leased premises, so it does apply to new leases, renewal leases and all Shareholders in a Cooperative with a Proprietary Lease.

Sample Acknowledgement Form (download)

If your building is concerned that Shareholders or Unit Owners will possibly default on their maintenance or common charges during the period of the sublease, there is a simple Rider that the building can attach to the existing sublease application to ensure that the building is made whole in the case of a delinquency in payment.

The Rider, which we have provided for in the link at the bottom of this article, states that in the case of a delinquency by the Shareholder or the Unit Owner, the subtenant, upon written notice from the Board will pay their rent directly to the Cooperative or Condominium until such time that the delinquency is taken care of.

This Rider, with a signature by the Shareholder and Subtenant will enable the Board to collect fees that are due more quickly and all parties are aware of their responsibility in the case of a default.

Sample Rider For Coops / Condos (Word Doc)

 

Update for 2017: Click Here For NEW Regulations
In New York City, the winter heating season is from October 1st – May 31st of any given winter. The heating requirements are going to be significantly different from the other times of the year and we’re going to break it down for you so that you can easily understand the requirements.
Each day is split into two different times; there are the Daytime requirements, which last from 6AM – 10PM and there are the Nighttime requirements, lasting from 10PM – 6AM.
The following heat settings are in place during these two times:
Daytime (6AM – 10PM): When the temperature dips below 55 degrees outside, the internal temperature of any given apartment must be kept at or above 68 degrees.
Night (10pm – 6AM): When the temperature falls below 40 degrees outside, it is mandated that the interior temperature of an apartment must be kept at or above 55 degrees.
55 Degrees of an interior temperature sure does sound chilly, so most coop and condo buildings in NYC will keep their indoor temperature settings a little higher. This could be by altering the cycle of heat that the boiler is moving through, or it could be adjusting their complete system if that boiler works off of sensors within the apartment, as was discussed in the building.
If you feel as though you are not being provided with adequate heat (if this is a routine occurrence, and not a result of emergency boiler work or for major work such as a complete boiler replacement), it would behoove the tenants to call Management, and if they do not respond, to alert 311 so that they can step in on what may be a systematic issue.

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