Updated 03/14/2013 11:16 PM
Questions To Ask Before Buying Properties Damaged By Sandy
The NY1 Real Estate report has some tips on what questions to ask if you're looking to buy a property that suffered damage during Hurricane Sandy. NY1's Jill Urban filed the following report.
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So you’ve found a fabulous apartment located in Zone A. The zone may not deter you from buying the apartment, but it should trigger some key questions before you buy.
"Post-Hurricane Sandy, if you are thinking of buying an apartment in, say, Zone A in NYC, you need to think differently and approach your due diligence differently," says Adam Stone of Regosin, Edwards, Stone and Feder.
Stone is a real estate attorney who says buyers should ask very specific questions before buying into a building that was affected by Hurricane Sandy.
For starters, you need to understand the extent of the damage.
"What type of damage was there?" he says. "If so, how was it repaired? Licensed contractors with the insurance company involved, with the department of buildings signoff. You want to know that all of these things were done properly."
Even though it’s not common, Stone also suggests having a professional engineer come to inspect the areas of the building that were damaged and even the apartment.
Also, find out how the repairs were paid for.
"Hopefully, everything was covered by insurance, which means the building had adequate insurance to cover this," Stone says. "If it was not covered by insurance, what does that mean to the owners in the building? Will there be higher monthly fees as a result of the storm, or are insurance premiums going up to result in higher fees?"
And find out if the building is evaluating its vulnerabilities. If there were to be another storm, what plan is in place to protect the building-wide systems? Also, what will it cost?
And from a quality of life point of view, it's good to find out how well building management handled the situation. Were residents well-informed about repairs and issues?
If you are selling in one of these buildings, you should also do a little homework.
"If you are a seller, it would be wise to do part of the due diligence for the purchaser ahead of time.. that way you can present them with all the documentation that they may want to see and as a result make a smoother transaction for the sale of your apartment.
Because putting a buyer’s mind at ease may be your best marketing strategy.