Can I sell my coop in NYC?

Just like buying a coop without a broker is possible but not recommended since the advice of a buyer’s agent is technically free and you’d miss out on the opportunity for a buyer’s broker commission rebate, you shouldn’t necessarily avoid brokers if you’re asking can I sell my coop.

Rather than asking can I sell my coop, you should ask can I get the same exposure to all buyers without paying the standard 6% broker commission.

The short answer is yes. You can sell your coop without a broker. However, it’s better to work with a flat fee RLS listing broker instead of no broker at all.

A flat fee broker can list your home on the RLS, which functions as the local inter-broker listings database where listing brokers offer commission to buyers’ brokers.

Can I sell my coop without a broker at all?

The short answer is yes. However, traditional for sale by owner (FSBO) sellers will face some difficulties that can be ameliorated with a flat fee RLS listing.

The main problem that traditional FSBO sellers face is the inability to fully engage the 90% of buyers who are represented by agents.

If you don’t want to engage listing brokers or buyers’ brokers at all, then yes you can list as a traditional For Sale By Owner seller and even write “no brokers” or “principals only” on your listing. However, this is ill advised as you will be guaranteed to be boycotted by 100% of buyers’ agents. Unfortunately for you, 90% of all home buyers are represented by an agent so your listing would essentially be off market.

Why won’t buyers’ agents show FSBO listings?

Because they have no assurance or mechanism to get paid! No one wants to work for free. Just because a FSBO seller says they will pay a fee to buyers’ agents does not mean that it will happen. There are no protections in place for agents.

How do buyers’ agents get paid on normal for sale by agent listings?

Through the genius of contractual co-broking. All brokerages of a local Realtor or inter-broker association contractually agree before joining to split commission with other members on their listings. Typically the split is a mandatory 50% of the total commission.

As a result, buyers’ agents won’t hesitate to show the listings of their fellow member firms. In NYC the dominant inter-brokerage listings database is the RLS (REBNY Listing Service).

Can I sell my coop without paying commission?

Yes, if you use a flat fee RLS listing and sell to an unrepresented buyer, you won’t have to pay any commission upon closing!

If you choose to close with a represented buyer, then you will owe whatever commission you’ve decided to offer buyers’ agents in RLS.

With a flat fee RLS listing, you have the power to choose when, if and whom you decide to sell to. You could never accept an offer during your entire listing period, or simply email us to take your listing off market and as a result never owe any commission whatsoever.

Can I sell my coop without any professionals at all?

You will need a real estate attorney at your side, especially in New York City where purchase contracts are customizable and negotiable. Moreover, condominiums and cooperatives have building financials and board meeting minutes that should be diligence by a real estate lawyer. Furthermore, you’ll need the attorney to review the offering plan on your behalf. This is especially important for a new development where the sponsor or developer has just written the offering plan. Lastly, your real estate attorney will manage the closing process, give you an exact breakdown of closing costs and negotiate the contract on your behalf.

So while a traditional listing broker charging 6% commission might not be necessary, it’s extremely important to get access to the RLS broker database through a flat fee broker and to hire a seasoned real estate attorney to guide you through the closing process.

Can I sell my coop without getting harassed by brokers?

You’ve probably heard about infamous cases of bad behavior by brokers soliciting hapless FSBO home sellers.

The ironic thing about selling FSBO is that you’ll be boycotted by all the good brokers (i.e. brokers who represent real buyers) but you’ll be constantly solicited by all the bad brokers (i.e brokers without buyers looking for their next listing client).

If you’re adamant on proceeding with a traditional FSBO, be very careful about revealing your personal contact information. This will be difficult as often times one broker will pose as an unrepresented buyer in order to get your contact information and hand it off to another broker who will solicit you.

Even though real estate websites like Zillow or StreetEasy will attempt to protect and hide your contact info, you will still presumably want to contact and thereby reveal your contact information to unrepresented buyers right?

As a result, it’s nearly impossible to keep your contact information away from cold calling agents because there are companies that specialize in acquiring the contact information of FSBO home sellers! The only way you can avoid revealing your contact information completely to clever brokers is to not respond to any inquiries at all. In which case what was the point of you listing your home for sale in the first place?

Can I sell my coop without physically getting harassed by brokers?

Unfortunately, it will be very difficult to fully avoid brokers at open houses because anyone can attend by definition. As a result, you will be bound to run into brokers attending alone or “previewing” for their international buyers at your open house. Be very wary of brokers attending without clients! They’ll be bound to try to corner you in kitchen and make you go through the pitch book they brought detailing how they’re supposed to be different from the 50,000 other agents in NYC.

The best way to deal with broker harassment is to just immediately decline as soon as solicitation begins. You can tell them you’re not interested and to get out if they have no intention of trying to find a buyer. If they refuse to get out, you can call the police or have a muscular friend escort them out of your apartment.

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Disclosure: Hauseit and its affiliates do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.




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