TLee's tips & tricks | the travel edition

The Tips

After one dozen, expertly planned or often not  planned at all, trips in this last year, I have mastered the ability to pick up and go in about 3 hours. On my way back from Vegas the other day, the woman sitting next me noticed my travel pouch and mentioned that she loved it. She thought I was prepared for everything.  (Oh I am and I am so proud of it).  I geeked out and emptied right there for her . After she wrote down all of the contents, I thought maybe I was onto something. Since this time of year is more about hitting the road, our monthly tips are the most helpful for Summer travel. Travel tips to make the airport less stressful and finally all of the contents of my Travel Pouch. All are my  must haves that have saved me in every delayed, cancelled, missed-my-connection scenario. 

1. Gel travel pillow and easy fold blanket for the plane. You can use a pashmina or a sarong for this.

2. A smart suitcase. I have the Away and a small Raden. It's 2018, time for a suitcase that weighs itself, charges your gadgets, has bluetooth tracking and designed so beautifully you can push it with your pinky.

3. Electronics Pouch- buy a pencil case and fill it with charging bases, banks, micro usb, ligtening cable and headphone converter cords.

4. Wear your most bulky shoes on the plane. For me this is usually my sneakers or boots.

5. Pack light workout clothes that can hang and dry overnight. I pack one set and wash and wear if needed.

6. Foldable water bottle, most airports have filtered water systems. No need to buy a bottle of water for $5.

7. Purchase snacks at your local drug store or grocery store before you take off and save money at the airport. Nothing ruins my mood more than paying $4 for a bag of M&Ms that I have no business eating in the first place.

8. Get there early. I used to laugh when my mom would have us at the airport a half a day before a flight. While she may be too much, traveling for leisure should feel like it. Start your trip off in the right frame of mind by getting to the airport hours before your flight so you have time for issues, relaxing and cocktails. 

Tlee's Travel Pouch

I am known for always being prepared. It is truly less about reputation and more about me avoid being uncomfortable in any ways that I can. I just don't like it! Last year in Trelawny  my friend slipped on a rock while creating what turned out to be the most amazing IG beach shot. Problem is , she walked away bleeding. The things people go through for the shot. After laughing at her uncontrollably I asked if she had bandaids and antibiotic ointment. "Who walks with that stuff to the beach?". She raises her head to see me handing her two bandaids and Neosporin. 

1. Attach 3 safety pins inside of your pouch.

2. Tylenol, Benadryl, Emergen-C packet, Neosporin and whatever else you need in a pinch.

3. Burt's Bees cleansing wipes travel size (yellow pack)

4. Eye gels pads and sleep mask 

5. 2 Tide wipes

6. Sample size lotions and eye-cream (from magazines, events or beauty kits)

7. Small Ziplock bags 

8. Bug Spray wipes 

9, Ear plugs

10. Tea bags, coffee packs and lemon packs that I get from take out orders

11. Single use toothbrushes 

12. Hand sanitizing wipes 

13. Deodorant wipes or travel deodorant

14. A pen

15. Old airline headphones from previous trips



Easy information on coop purchasing

What is a co-op?

If you’ve been shacking up with a roommate in their apartment or have only called your parents’ house home, you might be confused on what a co-op actually is. A co-op building is a unique living situation in which buyers purchase stock shares that enable them to occupy a unit within.

If you go the condo route, you’ll own your actual unit, similar to buying a stand-alone house. But when it comes to co-op units, you’re not buying the floors, walls, and space between. You’re buying into the corporation.

Benefits of owning a co-op

The first step in looking to purchase a co-op is to understand whether a co-op is the right fit for your needs. A co-op will require more patience on your end as you are part of a community of shareholders and every decision made by them may affect you directly. Things like making changes in the apartment, like renovating, or subleasing your property will be things the co-op board will determine for you and for some people that is something they are not comfortable with.”

But if you’ve done your research and feel that a co-op is the best choice for you, you’ll be thrilled with the unique benefits this type of housing provides.

Lower cost

The first main benefit of buying a co-op is that they’re more budget friendly compared to condos. You’ll find that on average, a condo can cost over 60% more than a co-op similar in size, layout, and location. You’ll also pay less at closing when buying a co-op.

Plenty of options

Some parts of NYC consist of 75% co-op units and 25% condos when it comes to housing. Therefore, you’ll have a healthy number of options when it comes to finding a co-op, not as many with condos. As the price gets below $300K there are fewer options of condos in New York as you will see in the market searches. Just remember that they go quickly so you’ll have to act fast if you find one you’re interested in.

Great neighbors

Co-ops are known for their rigorous vetting processes. But this can be a benefit after you’ve moved in. You’ll find comfort in the fact that your neighbors will also have to agree to the same rules and conditions you did. You’ll enjoy a healthier and happier community.

Steps to buying a co-op

Buying a co-op does take persistence and patience. 

This doesn’t mean it’s impossible and an important note is that the bank underwriting process with a coop, condo or house is extremely similar to the coop board process, it just isn't interviewing or reference letter. Understand that all of documentation is similar in any real estate sale across the board. So if you don't like providing paperwork and proof, purchasing is not for you. But, here’s how to find your dream co-op.

  1. Assemble a team, including a mortgage broker, lawyer, and a knowledgeable agent. 
  2. Obtain a pre-approval letter. You’ll want to move quickly if you find a unit you’re interested in and you can’t move forward without it. The pre-approval comes first before searching.
  3. Start your search. Narrow down your options by neighborhood, price, features, and square footage.
  4. Make sure you qualify before submitting an application for a unit you’re interested in. Many co-ops in New York City require a minimum of 20% down when financing and a debt to income ratio of 28% or less. You may see 10% down or 35 % debt to income in some coops. You’ll also need to have 6 months to two years of maintenance and mortgage payments in liquid assets after closing depending on your board requirements. Maintain your good credit, salary and payments while searching, the bank will do multiple deep -dive credit reports up to and including the day you close on your purchase. 
  5. Prepare for the board if your application is accepted. Begin the title search (attorney) and mortgage application process. Submit your board package, which the  real estate agent should help you with.

The co-op board package will require a lot of documents, including all of your financial information in the past two years (bank and brokerage statements, tax returns, etc.), reference letters, income verification, multiple documents to sign and more. It also needs to be done right by an experienced  professional, otherwise it is likely to be returned to the buyer to revise.

  1. Interview with the board. This is stressful but if you come prepared, meet the board’s requirements, and agree with the bylaws, you should be good to go. But be patient, friendly and demonstrate why you would be a great neighbor. 
  2. Upon board approval, you will be cleared by the board to close. Simultaneously, you will bel cleared by the bank to close. Conduct a final walk through, checking everything from the appliances to the electrical outlets. Bring up any issues immediately. Get a closing assigned date from the agent. This date should works for both (buyer and seller) ,the coop attorney, the bank attorney, buyers and sellers. Expect that this can take up to a week to coordinate.  
  3. Attend the closing. You’ll meet with the seller, buyer, all attorneys involved, the co-op, your lender, and all involved real estate agents. After a few hours of paperwork and finances, you’ll officially be a co-op owner.

Buying  in NYC can be challenging for quite some time but  don’t give up yet.

At the end of the day this will be your home for many years and if the apartment is a good fit and the building is one you are comfortable with, focus on the goal of becoming the owner of that property and not on the lengthy tiring process it will take to get there.

If you know a co-op is the best option for you, your efforts will be well worth it. Don’t forget, you’ll want to secure renters insurance before you move into your new space. 

Register to Attend a Buyer's Worksop with Tricia Lee

Tricia Lee's team holds a homebuying workshop each Fall and Spring. Email reachme@tricialee.comfor more information.


On Being A Better Agent

These last few months I've been experiencing much needed growth in my career. I've been working on deals in markets that are new to me and meeting many new faces in the process. I've met some amazing talent that really had me thinking. What makes you so special? Are all brokers and agents alike? What sets strong agents apart? If I were looking for an agent to work with me on selling my home or buying my home, renting that dreamy apartment... what would mean the most to me? I know  there are specific qualities I would look for. I would want someone that is knowledgeable in my market, organized, competes well, strong in sales and service (do people want to work with them, like ability matters). I would want an excellent negotiator that thinks outside of the box and moves quickly. A problem solver and multi-tasker, someone organized and technologically savvy would be the best fit. The job duties of a stellar real estate agent are never easy, however I do believe they are pretty easy to define. I hope you know that I am committed to being a better agent, better than I was last year and even better than I was yesterday. 

June Newsletter


The first warm day each year and I am reminded of my terrible choices throughout the Winter. I then begin my mission to get my "Summer body" in like 14 days. This is usually some unrealistic combo of gallons of water, 2 work outs a day and completely depriving myself of anything and everything. Needless to say, I miss my goal every year. I won't let my efforts go to complete waste though. Here are a few locally owned fitness studios that I have tried and you should too. #fit4Summer 

BYKLYN | Flatbush Ave

BYKLYN Spin Studio at St. Marks & Flatbush -  excellent great sweat session, variety of classes with or without additional workout session after your spin time and the studio offers great promos and unlimited monthly membership pricing. Click here for more details!

Triomph -Park Slope | Gowanus

From expert personal training, power yoga, HOT H.I.I.T to the popular Butt, Gut, Tris & Thighs, Triomph is said to be the best training camp in Brooklyn. Take class a bootcamp class with Jack Gordon, co-owner and the real life Benjamin Button.

CKO Kickboxing | Clinton Hill 

This is not only an excellent cardio and strength training workout, it is a mood stabilizer (in my opinion). Punching that bag, kalestenics and drills really push you to the limit. This class will not only get everything tight and toned, you will also be sleeveless the entire Summer. Unlimited memberships start at just $109 a month. 

Kick off spring like a Brunchnista

Additional Information


I have a friend that has an entire blog dedicated to brunch and she should because it's what she spends most of her free time doing. You can always call her for a last minute recommendation in almost any city. Her and I talk about brunch spots all the time, so much so that we recently filmed a piece on all of my favorite local hide-outs and eateries. I spend a lot of time in cafes and restaurants in real estate. I totally get her obsession though. Brunch brings people together for the best kind of breakfast, one you can show up to late. This Spring, invite a few friends over and treat them to relaxing afternoon of good food and a great time. We did, and this is what we pulled together in under an hour. And this is what we did.


We chopped up every herb and tomatoes with fresh spinach and feta for this part. We argued about Michelle's suggestion to use a dash of nutmeg and my whole wheat panko, but all turned out well in the end.

2. Banana Nut Pancakes
This was my dish so naturally I cheated with the box mix, then got more creative with mushed bananas that I soaked in one shot of dark rum, walnuts and maple syrup. Was it one shot?

3. Brunchnista's Salmon Hash
I don't even know what went in this, I don't eat salmon and everyone knows that. *shrugs

4. Multi-Purpose Fruit Salad
The name is because we use berries and bananas, whatever can also be used to toss on the pancakes.

5. T-Lee Secret Mimosa
Not much of a secret but this always gets the party going. My "secret" is pineapple, orange banana juice wit the champagne. 

Michelle, the Brunchnista

I’m your go to girl for all brunch everything!—from food trends, to hosting brunch events and etiquette. A carefully curated brunch experience can take the edge off a stressful week and be motivation to start the next one strong. Allow me to introduce brunch as a way of life, sharing my wealth of knowledge and keeping you up to date with tips, tricks, reviews and more. is the passionate pursuit of the brunch lifestyle every day, not just Sunday.




Designer and boutique owner Jill Lindsay (on the left) of Fort 

Greene knows all about style be it in the home,

footwear or clothing. Her popular neighborhood 

business is home to almost daily family-focused events, 

business events, crafting and any kind of community 

organization fun things. Her shop is part cafe, neighbor-

hood hang out, fashion boutique and events space. 

Bringing fashion, sweet treats and family events to Brooklyn, 

we salute you Jill Lindsay. 



Confectionary magician, Miriam Milford -owner 

of the famous BCakeNY can create the cake of 

your dreams that is equally stunning and delicious. 

With returning clients like U2, Justin Beiber, Rhi Rhi 

and Jay Z the only challenge to creating your dream 

cake is getting your order in before Taylor Swift drops 

her next album. For keeping Brooklyn pretty and sweet, 

Miriam Milford-we salute you.



Owners of iisa bags, Ashaka Givens, Kim Hill and DJ Assi Dacosta teamed up to bring us the all new Radical Women BK located at 384 Tompkins Ave. A cluster boutique in Bed-Stuy with a simple premise, 4 dynamic women offering 4 unique brands. Find out more about these ladies and their brands  by visiting their boutique. Check their store hours and their on-line options at 


Brooklyn Love

This year I will not be standing in the aisles picking through left overs at the pharmacy on Valentine's Day. Not this time! Here are a few of my V’day finds for him, her and all of our love bugs.


From the kids to the co-workers, small but creative gift ideas can go a long way. Creating personalized labels turns any gift into something special. One of my favorites is this S’mores gift bag. The printable bag tag is free on-line or you can simply design your own. Combine one box of graham crackers, candy hearts and a mini chocolate bars. A nicely priced gift for 30 or more. This and so many other amazing ideas can be found on line. 

This year I’ve kept my Valentine’s Day short and extra sweet with the help of my favorite apps. I’m using the HobNob app to send invites to the girls for a special Galentine’s Day get together. The app let’s everyone rsvp and send updates in one place. For the special night I’m using the SOOTHE app for at home massage services. If you’re short on time send your sweetheart a bottle of bourbon using the MiniBar app or deliver a mani and pedi using the Glam Squad app. This year treat your loved ones by simply lifting a finger. xxo Tricia Lee

make money moves

Buy a home, save for that vacation or just stack? What are your financial goals?

10 Money Moves for 2018


  1. Cut the cable cord. As opposed to spending over $120 a month on cable services, opt for your HBO Now or Showtime On the Go, Netflix and Hulu. A package of 3 can run you about $45 per month and you won't miss much.
  2. At the grocery store buy the store brand and ditch the name brands. Pack your lunch, it will save you $3,000 per year and probably 5 pounds as well.
  3. In the home, re-think remodels. If it's time to spruce up your place but you need to stick to a budget, look where you can do cosmetic upgrades that won't require extensive work and licensing. In the kitchen, paint cabinets and change hardware. In the bathroom, you can upgrade the vanity, change light fixtures and replace faucets. 
  4. Think about a re-financing, especially if you don't plan on being in your home much longer. Adjustable rates can save a homeowner significant money IF you plan is to sell within the next few years. Speak with your financial advisor, it may be time to refi that 30 year to a 15 year. 
  5. Get a good old fashion money jar or shoe box. Each day save $10 or $70 per week, or $280 per month. By October you've saved for Holiday 2018 vacation. 
  6. Pamper for pennies with sites like Groupon and Living Social. You can still treat yourself but at a fraction of the price. 
  7. Switch credit cards in January and take advantage of 0% interest. Be sure to work really hard to pay them down. 
  8. If buying a home is your 2018 goal, attend a home buying workshop (mine preferably) and learn the best prep for buying your first home. 
  9. Get a family, just so you can get a family phone plan. You can cut your cell phone bill by 40%.
  10. Just say no. Be less impulsive with spending and think about the long term goals. 

Display their FAQs

Customers have questions, you have answers. Display the most frequently asked questions, so everybody benefits.

Jan 2018 / home ownership

10 Tips to Prepare to Sell your Home


· Deep clean and de-clutter! Everything should be clean and stripped down. Only keep things that you   want on hand. 

· Neutralize the decor in your space. Buyers cannot see beyond bold colors, outdated decor or clutter so    they need to see themselves living there. 

· Create empty space, get rid of extra furniture, clear corners and remove extra equipment.

· Minimize shelves, items on all counter, ledges or tables.

· Set out light smell good plug-in, diffusers or candles.

 ·In the bathrooms, remove plungers and supplies in bathroom. Only a decorative hand soap, hand towel and trash bin should be present.

· Put away all toiletries, personal items and jewelry and ensure all counters are clear.

· Open doors, blinds, drapes and turn on all lights.


· Clean front door and entrance way.

· Leave the home and leave the area. 

Schedule an In-Home Evaluation with Tricia Lee

Preparing to sell your home includes various steps. If you are ready to list your home, contact us to set up a in-home evaluation and listing presentation. 

Work with Tricia Lee |

dec 2017 / goals for 2018

Making 2018 a Happy New Year

Goal planning is a big part of my business and personal formula for productivity. I love planners, highlighters, lists and most of all ..a check mark. Below one of my favorite lifestyle planners, shares tips on writing and achieving goals. 


Setting goals means nothing if we don’t commit to them with action. Many times we have these hopes of being somewhere better than where we are but in reality we’re not putting forth the real effort it takes to get there.

You want to lose weight but you’re not working out or changing your diet appropriately. You want to make great grades but you’re catching up on Netflix and Youtube videos instead of putting the extra hours into your work and studying. You want to pump out more steady content for your blog but you scroll social media constantly instead of writing a post. The list goes on and on about want we want versus what we actually do.

Well, what is discipline? It’s giving up what we want now for what’s best later. And we benefit from it in the long run.

So maybe you’ve set some goals that you are lacking the will-power to keep. Here are 9 ways to stop playing games and stick to it!

Stop making it an option.

Make moves or make excuses, right? When we mentally make our goals optional instead of a priority we will find a million ways to reason ourselves out of it when the time comes, because we’re led by our feelings.

You have to get it into your brain that if this is the result you want to see, then this is not an option. Goals don’t magically get fulfilled because you want them to happen or wished them into existence; and time waits for no one. The months and the years will continue to pass whether you decide to make progress or not. It’s going to take you doing the work…or it’s not happening.

Make sure they’re timely.

Set dates and give yourself a time frame. Yes, deadlines bring on the pressure but pressure can be a healthy thing. It gets us moving and provides personal accountability. Don’t just let your goals float around aimlessly. Get concrete and provide a real timeline.

I’m going to lose this many pounds by the end of this month.

I’m going to write this many blog posts by the end of each week.

I’m going to take the exam and have my certification by this date.

I’m going to have enough saved up for my own place by this time next year.

Then post it somewhere you can see it so you can measure the progress you should be making.

Visualize it.

Why do people perish without a lack of vision? Because vision gives you a trajectory of where you’re going. When you can’t see where you’re going then you will aimlessly wander and it’s easy to get off track. Literally picture what the results will look like when you reach this goal. Getting a vision of the long term will also help you stay on course when you want to make excuses in the right-now. See it in your mind and take a mental picture.

Brainstorm the how.

I’m really big on being practical. While abstract ideas and inspirations sound nice to me, I want to know how. What is the real process that’s going to take place to make this possible? That’s why you’ll notice my blog posts are often numbered and broken down for practicality.

Now that you have an idea of where you want to go, what is the plan to get there? Again, it’s not going to magically happen just because the wish exists. You’re going to have to move your feet. Does this mean you’re going to get a personal trainer or make it a routine to go to the gym 3 mornings of the week? How many job applications are you going to put out a day? Will you dedicate 4 hours a week specifically to writing for your blog? The more specific you can get the better. Also, be sure to write it down. Statistics based off a Harvard study have shown that people who write down their goals have over an 80% higher chance of achieving them than people who don’t.


Make sure you’re doing something every week that’s bringing you closer. It’s so easy for life to interfere with our goals. But the truth is, we all have the same 24 hours. It’s not always about having time, it’s about making time. And you will make time for the things that are important to you. You will find a way to fit it in.

This is another reason why it’s important to be organized and also why I have a planner. Organization technically gives us more freedom because we are orchestrating how we are using our time. Being able to look at your week and organize your routine will give you an overview of how to shape your priorities into the times that are available.

Have accountability.


Two are always better than one. If you can get a workout buddy, a study partner or just a friend who is willing to check on you and say, “Hey, how’s it coming along? What’s holding you back?” it can make a world of a difference. We give ourselves more of a pass when it’s just us but having another eye, again, brings a healthy amount of pressure that keeps us on track.

Assess your progress every two weeks or monthly.

At the beginning of every month I revisit my goals from the previous month to see what I accomplished or what I need to implement into the following month. Taking the time to reflect gives you a good measurement of your progress or shows you how you may need to adjust your plans.

Reward yourself.

Nothing is wrong with a little positive reinforcement! Connecting progress to reward is simple motivation psychology. If you’ve made good progress or accomplished a goal, seriously, treat yourself. There’s nothing worse than feeling like you did all this just to suffer. No, you stepped out, you challenged your limits, you grew from it- that is worth celebrating! Take a breather and invest in something that you love because you worked hard for it. Just don’t get carried away and lose everything you worked for. Balance is the magical word.

Let’s recap; you are going to set and stick to your real goals by:

  1. Making moves and stop making excuses. It is no longer an option.
  2. Giving yourself a timeline with real dates and times by which you plan on having this accomplished.
  3. Getting a vision of where you’re going into your head and letting it be your motivator to stay the course.
  4. Outlining a real plan as to how you’re going to reach this goal and getting as specific as possible.
  5. Prioritizing and making sure you’re doing something every week that will bring you closer.
  6. Being ready to become adaptable. When the life takes you off track you will keep the goal but adjust the plan as necessary.
  7. Finding accountability that will hold you to your goal and not let you get off easy.
  8. Assessing your progress every two weeks to a month to see how you’re coming along.
  9. Rewarding yourself when you’ve reached the promise land because you worked hard and deserve it!

-Britney A. Moses |



send a message

Tricia Lee

Compass 514 2nd St, Brooklyn, New York 11215


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