Co-Purchasing, Gifting and Guarantors – Your Guide to Purchasing with Assistance

Sometimes, despite your best efforts, it can still be difficult for you to buy a home on your own. But fortunately, you don’t have to go it alone if there’s someone else in your life who can help you. Some co-ops and condos will permit you to purchase an apartment with assistance in the form of either a co-purchaser, a guarantor or with a bit of help from a gift. How do these work? Here’s a brief overview.

Co-Purchasing

  • Co-purchasing is exactly what it sounds like – someone else buys the apartment with you, so you are both owners of the apartment.
  • Both of you will have to fill out the purchase application and, if it’s a co-op, you will both have to be present for the board interview.

Guarantor

  • In this case, you are the sole owner of the apartment, but someone else guarantees the payment of the maintenance. If you don’t keep current with payments, the co-op board or condo association can look to this person for payment.
  • The rules for each building may vary, but guarantors can expect to still have to fill out at least a part of the application or the entire application as well. However, they probably won’t be asked to attend the board interview.

Gifting

  • If neither of the above options work for you, you can also be “gifted” the down payment amount. This is often a very popular option since the person giving the gift usually does not have to fill out the purchase application.
  • The person giving the gift often must present a gift letter or affidavit (also generally required by your lender, if obtaining a mortgage) and information regarding the source of funds.
  • However, many buildings will still require that you, as the purchaser, qualify on your own in order to proceed. In other words, after the down payment, your debt to income ratio and post closing liquidity must meet their financial qualifications.

Important note – every building will not permit all of the purchase options above. Some might permit one or two, some might permit all of them and some may permit none. That’s why it’s imperative for you to discuss your financial situation with your real estate agent at the very beginning of your search.

Not sure which one is right for you? Talk with your real estate agent and your mortgage broker. Together, you can figure out which solution may work best for your circumstances. Don’t have an agent yet? Then feel free to reach out to me. I’m always happy to help!

Nikki R. Thomas
Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker
The Corcoran Group – Village Office
212-937-1647
nikki.thomas@corcoran.com

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