NEW YORK CITY APARTMENTS: RENTAL PROCESS
Looking for a great apartment to rent in New York City can sometimes be challenging but
you do not need to do it on your own.
As a member of the Real Estate Board of New York, Prime Realty Luxury has access to thousands of rental properties in the
city and as such, can assure you that you'll be shown all your best options until you find that right match.
1. INITIAL CHAT
The first step is for the client to contact us and tell us what he / she is looking for in terms of:
- move-in date
- budget client is working with
- area(s) & neighborhoods of interest
- the type of apartment, specific needs / deal breakers
4. APPLICATION & PAPERWORK
Once the client has decided on the right apartment, an application is filled out and a complete paperwork must be submitted within 24/48 hours to the landlord for approval. (see Q/A for details on this)
Oftentimes the rent can be negotiated down a little (depending on market conditions and overall quality of the application package) and when that is the case Prime Realty will use all its resources & relationships to meet the client’s budgetary needs.
The real estate professional runs a search in the company's database comprising thousands of rental properties (luxury apartments & standard) and calls landlords to find out about any non-listed / off-market property. This will ensure that we don't leave any stone unturned.
The client then receives a list with the best available options that are narrowed down according to his/her requirements.
5. LEASE SIGNING & CHECKS
Once the client has been approved, leases are immediately sent out.
Lease signing can be done either online (if landlord's systems permit it) or physically at the leasing office. If client is abroad, lease signing may be done remotely using the services of a notary, then Fedexed to NY.
Bank certified checks are required within 24 hours from leases being signed. (see Q/A for details on this)
3. APARTMENT HUNTING
Client decides on the properties that need to be looked at - in 90% of cases, all of them.
We then line up the appointments for daytime or weekend showings. For some buildings, special after-hours access can be requested in the evening.
However bear in mind that NYC is a very dynamic market and the sooner we meet, the better off we are. (see Q/A for details on this)
Leases have been signed and checks are in, client is now a new tenant.
He or she will pick up the keys on the lease start day at the front desk (for doorman building) or at the management office (for non-doorman building).
Q&A FOR FIRST TIME RENTERS
Q. What paperwork will I need to show?
A. An ID, proof of income and recent bank statements is a good start.
The following paperwork will be enough in 95% of residential transactions:
- A valid government ID
- Proof of income: most recent pay stubs or for self-employed individuals the most recent tax returns (and in some cases a CPA letter)
- Assets: most recent bank statements from a US-based bank (having an account here in a non-american bank is fine). Foreign statements are not considered. No need to show all transaction details, summary page often will suffice. The more money we can show the better therefore all accounts should be disclosed, including at least savings & checking.
In rare cases, the following documents may be asked:
- Landlord reference letter
- Additional tax returns
Q. DO I NEED TO CONTACT OTHER BROKERS IF I WANT TO BE SURE I SEE EVERYTHING THAT IS AVAILABLE?
A. NO, YOU DON'T.
As members of the real estate board of New York, Prime Realty NY has access to the whole city rental inventory (luxury apartments & standard elevator / walk up buildings), including thousands of condo / coop buildings, hundreds of rental buildings, exclusive apartments represented by 16,000 co-operating brokers.
That represents a significant gain in time for the client who therefore does not need to spend additional time contacting other brokers.
We can show you just about any property that is available in New York.
Q. HOW LONG DOES THE WHOLE PROCESS TAKE?
A. EVERYTHING CAN BE DONE POTENTIALLY IN LESS THAN A WEEK.
Showing the client's all best available properties typically takes anywhere from 1 hour to a couple of days depending on how many properties the client needs to look at.
From the time the client puts in the application, he / she has 24 - 48 hours to submit a complete paperwork at which point, management office takes anywhere from 24 hours to 72 hours to give us the approval.
Once we have the approval, leases are sent out immediately and a lease signing can occur within 24 hours.
In other words, someone who needs to move yesterday can have everything completed and move within 4/5 days (assuming all paperwork is readily available, funds in the bank, leasing office's backlog manageable, etc).
Q. I WORK DURING THE DAY, WHEN CAN WE MEET?
A. LUNCH BREAKS, EVENINGS OR WEEKENDS.
Management offices are typically open...during business hours which often creates a conflict with working clients. A few solutions:
- Lunch Breaks: we can always meet for a quick 30 min during your lunch time and meet again a couple of time throughout the week: best option as this allows to have an edge over the weekend crowd.
- Evenings: our great relationships with a number of landlords allow us to get after-hours access for our clients. However, this can be done with only a few buildings therefore if the client wants to see all the best options out there, he / she will have to meet during business hours, including on the weekend.
- Weekends: we make ourselves available 7 days / week for our clients & most buildings are open on weekends. This may work if lunch breaks & weeknights are not possible. But clients should keep in mind that this option carries the risk of the property being rented before we get the chance to see it.
Q. WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS TO QUALIFY ?
A. AROUND 40 TIMES THE RENT - FINE CREDITS - CASH TO SHOW IN THE BANK
Most New York landlords have the following requirements:
- Income: tenant(s)' compensation should be at or above 35 - 40 times the monthly gross rent in total guaranteed income. 75 - 80 times if a guarantor is needed.
Guaranteed income includes base salary, plus any guaranteed bonuses (on HR letter).
If bonus is not guaranteed, then landlords will likely consider average bonuses from recent years, employment tenure etc. Banking industry employs thousands of people in NYC and landlords are familiar with bonus-centric compensations.
- Credits: although no landlord will disclose their actual minimum number, good credits are expected.
- Assets: again, there is no magic number here and because clients' checking accounts typically are kept to a minimum, it is strongly advised to disclose all accounts (checking, savings etc). The more money we show the better off we are.
Q. I AM A FOREIGNER WITH NOT CREDIT AND / OR NO INCOME, WILL THAT BE A PROBLEM?
A. NO, YOU ARE IN GOOD HANDS - SEE "INTERNATIONALS" SECTION
Prime Realty is always available to help international clients find their home, advise on the various rental strategies, assist with the paperwork.
In fact, there is a whole section on the site specifically designed to address common issues that all foreign prospective tenants face.
For more info, please go to "Internationals".
Q: I AM STARTING A BUSINESS AND AM LOOKING FOR AN OFFICE, STORE - CAN YOUR COMPANY HELP?
A. YES, WE CAN.
Prime Realty helps sourcing commercial properties for lease anywhere in New York City whether it is an office, a retail store, a warehouse or a restaurant.
New York's commercial market is deep and rich but can also be significantly challenging for anyone without much experience.
The first years for any business being the most critical ones, you want to make sure your business is set on the right track from the beginning.
Give us a call and tell us what you are looking for and we will discuss options together.