If you're on the prowl for a co-op board that embraces a dictionary versus despotic interpretation of the word "cooperative," you can find a multitude of clues from the listing itself and from the answers to a few strategic questions lobbed at the seller's broker. 

The more you can check off, the better the chance you won't spend 14 years nursing the sting of a board turndown.

Top 10 tipoffs of a liberal co-op board:

  1. The building allows apartments to be purchased as pied-a-terres.
  2. Pets are permitted.
  3. Owners are allowed to renovate, with approval, at any time during the year, not just the three months when most of the residents are spending their quality time in the Hamptons.
  4. Parties are allowed on the roof.
  5. Understanding that situations change and an owner may not be able to sell immediately, the building has a relatively flexible subletting policy.
  6. Parents are allowed to purchase with or for children, or act as guarantors for their children.
  7. Children are allowed to purchase with or for their parents.
  8. The building doesn't require that the purchaser have a not-so-small fortune in liquid assets available post-closing.
  9. The building requires 20 or 25% down, and really means it.
  10. You don't have to meet your dinner in the lobby.

Think of another one? Leave a comment!

Related posts:

Forget timing the market. Time the building instead.

How to get your dog past a co-op board

My Big Fat Board Interview

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