What Home Buyers Should Consider When Deciding What Type of Manhattan Housing to Buy

What Home Buyers Should Consider When Deciding What Type of Manhattan Housing to Buy


What all are the different types of homes that are on the market for real estate in Manhattan:  condos,co-ops (apartments) and brownstones/ townhomes (single family residences/ SFR).


What type of Manhattan housing to buy

Manhattan Inventory Landscape:   70% of Manhattan property are made up of co-ops; about 20%-25% are condos and the rest are townhouses (3-5%).


NYC Condo Benefits:  In condos you own the unit outright and are issued a deed.    You also own part of all the common areas that you pay for known as common charges.  These pay for the  elevators, lobby, common garden, etc.

More freedom to do as you please with your unit.  You can rent it out all you want, use it as a pied a terre, and are not answerable to a strict board.

No need to go through rigorous financial intrusion by a board.

Best form of vertical living ownership rights.

Easier to sell than a co-op.


Condo Cons: Higher common charges than in co-ops because you are in charge of paying your own taxes.

Possible higher building turnover due to more investors that buy into the building with the intention of renting out the units.

Financing in a NEW or un-established condo building can tricky.   If the sponsor owns most of the units, you MAY have a hard time finding a bank to give you a loan.

Closing costs are much higher in a new condo development, ranging from 7-10% of the purchase price.

Condos run you about 30% more expensive than co-ops because of ownership stake.

There is less inventory to choose from because Manhattan only has about 20-25% made up of condo inventory.


Co-op Benefits:  More often than not, financially stable due to the rigorous financial screening of the people looking to purchase in the bldg. 25-30% cheaper because of the type of ownership interest.

Typically less common charges paid than condos.

Tax deductibility on both your mortgage interst and bldg’s underlying mortgage.  No investors and high bldg turnover.

More inventory to choose from in Manhattan.


Co-op Cons: You own shares of a corporation and are issued a proprietary lease. You do not own the unit, the coropration does.

Very strict renting laws if at all you are even allowed to rent out.

Generally does not allow pied a terres.  Primary residences only.

Strict board and financial reviews and applications.

Harder to sell and board has to approve the potential purchaser.


 Brownstone /Townhouse NYC Benefits: You own the land as well as the improvements.

The closest thing to owning a house in the suburbs, but you are in the middle of the greatest city in the world.

You have complete privacy.

This type of ownership is very exclusive.

You will have outdoor space.

No pet restrictions.


NYC Brownstone/ Townhouse Cons:  Very expensive to own and maintain.

You cannot just lock up and leave but have to make provisions for upkeep while you are out, just like a regular house.

Very small inventory to choose from.

Can be harder to sell because of the exclusivity and much higher price tag


Here are some key questions you need to ask yourself in determining the type of home you should buy:

What should buyers consider when they are trying to decide what type of home is right for you? Know your goals for purchasing–  investment, rent it out, pied a terre, primary residence, etc.

Also, what type of lifestyle do you live?  Condos give you a lot more freedom with your property since you are issued a deed.   You can use the condo as a second home, family vacation home, business commuter pad, etc.

Since Manhattan real estate is so expensive, what ownership stake can you afford that will offer you the quality of life that you are looking for that is within your reach?

Lastly, do you have a stable job and US credit history, and  income enough to pass a strict board review;  and still have 6 months to 1 year in cash reserves after closing?

Read:  How to Buy an Apartment in Manhattan and Get the Best Interest Rate


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Further Reading:  How to Buy an Apartment in Manhattan and Get the Best Interest Rate

The Importance of Finding the Best Representation When Buying Real Estate for Sale in Manhattan

What Home Buyers Should Consider When Deciding What Type of Manhattan Housing to Buy

Work with a trusted, Luxury Manhattan real estate broker specializing in Manhattan aptsNYC brownstones, and dog friendly apartments for rent & sale:

Soho LoftsTribeca Condos - WestVillage Apartments - Upper East Side NYC Apartments-Upper West Side Apartments Battery Park City Apartments -Chelsea ApartmentsGramercy Apts - Midtown East NYC - Midtown West NYC - Murray Hill in NYC - Lower East Side NYCEast Village Apartments

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