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February events

New York Fashion Week

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New York Fashion Week

Sep 4-14th 

Fashion Week returns this month, filled with luxury designers, style influencers, and shutterbugs lined up for the most extravagant shows of the season. While not all events are open to the public, check out the schedule and buy tickets to the available festivities here

Brooklyn Museum Sala Party

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         Brooklyn Museum Salsa Party

Thursday, February 14th  6–9:30p 

Martha A. & Robert S. Rubin Pavilion, The season of salsa continues with the Salsa Party hosted by Balmir Latin Dance Studio! Start the evening with a class led by professional dancers at 6 pm, followed by live music, social dancing, and performances by Brooklyn’s very best Latin dance teams.

Click here

Frida Kahlo: Appearances Can Be Deceiving

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Brooklyn Museum, Frida Kahlo: 

 February 8–May 12 Brooklyn Museum

Explore Frida Kahlo's creative vision and self-crafted identity.This rare presentation showcases not only Kahlo's clothing and other personal items from her lifelong home in Mexico City, but also important paintings and drawings by the artist, photographs, film, and documentation, as well as works of Mesoamerican art from our collection. Click here for tickets.

Amateur Night at the Appollo

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Amateur Night at the Apollo Theater

February 20, 2019

The world-famous Amateur Night at the Apollo returns for its opening night of the season with a new lineup of fresh talent, from dancers and singers to comedians and spoken-word artists. Buy tickets to the iconic event here. 

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lifestyle

Why So Many People Spend Jan 1st Cleaning Up & Cleaning Out

It's January 1st 2019 and after a beautiful night of dinner and celebrating in Manhattan, here I sit with my hair in a top bun covered in dust and smelling like a bottle of bleach. Because I, Tricia Lee, can not give anything my quality attention until I am at peace with my surroundings. What's with the first day of the year cleaning and decluttering? Well, for so many of us we look at today as a fresh start and with that we want things to feel fresh. Studies show that the first step of getting focused and attacking new projects is often working to get your space clean and clutter-free. So if you're not quite sure where to jump in on your new years goals just yet. Let this clean up be your warm up. 

Tlee Tip #1, whenever I need to do a deep clean, I take a moment to watch or read about someone else's hoarding habits. I know it's terrible, but it gets me to jump up and whisk trough the painful task of clearing, scrubbing and junking the unwanted. I hoard beauty products, condiments and almost anything paper. Yes, if you're ever in a pinch, I may have an extra ketchup or Stevia packet in my purse.  Well it ends today! I've been to the recycle been more times than I can count this morning. Bye-bye Summer '17 magazines, so long shoes that hurt my feet, peace out tupperware tops with no bottoms. Today I am a new woman. And I will tell you why it's worth it, hoarding starts with normal clutter so we are all about 5 take-out containers away from ending up on a reality show. A topic I dove a little deeper into this past month when I participated in an article on Hoarder Homes for Apartment Therapy.  But if you're not quite sure if you have clutter or a hoarding problem, check out this article from Health.com. I have no idea why I find hoarding so fascinating but hopefully you will find these tools  useful to getting your life, space and time in order. Cheers! 


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lifetyle

The First Step in Moving is Money. What's your 2019 Plan?

 

Resolutions aren't just for healthy diets and gym memberships. Organizing your finances may be intimidating, but setting clearly defined goals will help ensure your financial success and support that big move you have planned for 2019. 

Get a head start with this checklist!

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lifestyle

20 New Year's Eve Decorations to Celebrate 2019 in Style

As the year comes to a close, its time to usher in a new beginning surrounded by those you love. Kick off the countdown in style with these decorations, as recommended by Elle Decor

Read the full article here.

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making sense ofthe coop purchase

-Tricia Lee


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 home buying workshop twice per year. Email reachme@tricialee.com for more information.

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

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

10 Simple Money Moves

  

  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. 

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home ownership

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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 | reachme@tricialee.com

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Tricia Lee

Compass 514 2nd St, Brooklyn, New York 11215

reachme@tricialee.com

She is known as a long time business owner and resident turned real estate agent, but Tricia Lee is 

really a marketing genius. If anyone can get the word out and put your property in front of 

people and press, it's this pint-sized powerhouse. 

- Mr. Stephens, Fort Greene  

Bio