Can parents leave a co-op to their children?

On Behalf of | Dec 14, 2022 | Co-ops and condominiums, Real estate law |

Parents often find peace of mind by setting aside significant assets like property or homes when making their estate plans. However, the co-op board may have other ideas about whether the heir can move into or stay in the shareholder’s apartment.

In many cases, the board can approve or deny the lease’s transfer. However, there may be language in the lease that stipulates that the board will not block the transfer to a financially responsible heir. If the unit is held in a trust, the board is unlikely to go along with the transfer.  .

Selling the property

If the board denies the transfer to the heir, the apartment will be sold, and the heir or heirs will get the equity from the sale. They will just not be able to move into the apartment.

It’s hard for New Yorkers to willingly give up a cherished apartment and the potential opportunity to keep it in the family. Still, the shareholder who foresees problems or unresolved issues with the lease’s transfer may wish to sell the property while still alive. This means the upheaval of moving, but the seller can take the proceeds and buy a condo or other property where they may be able to seamlessly transfer the unit to their heir.

Whether moving to a new space or transferring the current unit, leaseholders may want to discuss transferring the unit with an attorney who understands co-op law and real estate transactions here in New York. They can review the building’s rules or bylaws and determine if transferring ownership to an heir is viable.