What co-op boards REALLY want to know about buyers

By Margot Slade  | April 7, 2011 - 7:31AM

Do boards read buyers' application packages thoroughly, and if so, what gets the most attention....recommendation letters, financial info, employment history, etc.?

Over on, board members are saying the answer is yes and the financials, especially bank statements....though credit scores may be less important than you think.

"I make sure the deposits add up to the salary declaration," says one. "I look for any regular deductions or payments that might be a loan that wasn't declared (we've spotted a lot of undeclared student loans and such this way, as applicants often try to make their debt load look lighter than it really is)."

Board members say they also look for "proof that your balance is a result of consistent earnings of some sort and not, uh, an infusion of capital from family elders to make you look like less of a loser."

But they're divided over whether credit scores are too flawed to be useful, since "anyone who was unemployed for a long period is bound to have their credit trashed, even if they've regained employment and cleaned up their financial picture."

Many say credit scores best reflect an applicant's "financial personality" and history of fiscal responsibility: "If I had something to rent someone and one was a banker with a salary/bonus that represented 10% of the rental amount with 2 years of rent in cash in the bank, and a credit score of 520 vs& school teacher with little cash in bank and a salary that represented 30% of the rental amount and a credit score of 780. No contest, schoolteacher is a slam dunk."


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Closing the window on co-op board approvals

See all 'My Big Fat Board Interview'

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