A recent New York Times article caught our eye here at Gotham Brokerage Co., Inc. It’s about something we’ve started seeing a lot, especially in the past year or so: Parents taking advantage of low interest rates and a buyers’ housing market to buy NYC apartments as gifts for their adult children.
Their motives aren’t always only altruistic, of course. NYC apartments, even one-bedroom units, are pretty significant gifts, and plenty of parents simply want to be generous and make sure their kids are set up in good housing. But parents can treat a “gift apartment” as an investment (especially with a favorable gift tax exclusion) or as a pied á terre or big-city second home, a not-uncommon thing in New York.
The arrangement can work for parents and adult children alike, but such a situation can open up a host of complicated issues. Parents have to decide if they want to own the apartment or establish joint ownership through a family trust; how often they want to use it if the child is living there; and, especially, what kind of co-op, condo or renters insurance New York City living requires.
From borough to borough, neighborhood to neighborhood, the right fit can vary. That’s one of the reasons why people who’ve just bought or rented an NYC apartment should secure a true New York insurance broker, a company that can tailor a renters policy to meet your specific needs in coverage and price. Because they work with several insurance carriers, brokerage companies usually can offer lower prices than agents working for one insurance firm. New York City renters insurance isn’t a one-size-fits-all proposition, and that’s not even considering NYC condo and co-op insurance, which can present their own complexities.
Gift apartments also raise multiple questions about proper insurance coverage, including what kind is needed when the primary occupant doesn’t own it, who the main policyholder should be; and how both owners and occupants have appropriate protection. They’re difficult questions, and the answers are trickier in NYC than practically anywhere else.
Bottom line, people buying or renting “gift apartments” should use a brokerage company that knows the intricacies of NYC insurance, and Gotham Brokerage is just such a company. We’ve been serving the five boroughs for more than 50 years, and we’ve amassed a passel of happy clients throughout the Tri-State area.
If you’re the proud parent of, say, a recent Fordham University senior, Columbia MBA or NYU law grad and you want to set the kid up in a two-bedroom flat in Red Hook that is more affordable than ever – and you think would also make for a solid investment – give us a call or shoot us an email for a quote. We’ll make sure your policy gives you the right coverage at the right price.