Prospect Heights Building in Limbo Finally Gets C of O — But Buyers Still Can’t Close

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The Karl Fischer-designed building at 659 Bergen Street in Prospect Heights finally received its certificate of occupancy May 17. Some buyers have been in contract since 2010 and expected to move in long ago. Thirty-day notices were sent out June 4 telling buyers to prepare their mortgages and get ready to move. But then the next day another letter went out telling them to disregard the first one and that the owner is working to resolve some title issues, a source told us. As it turns out, a lis pendens was filed against the building in February, which means the buyers cannot close.

“They cannot close until the foreclosure is resolved,” said an attorney for one of the buyers, who requested anonymity. “Either they make a settlement with the bank to close or someone else buys the debt. It’s an objection to title.” The impact on the buyers has been “devastating,” he continued. “There’s a lot of money and emotion tied up in this.” His client could cancel the contract and get back the deposit, but doesn’t want to. So much time has elapsed that it would be impossible for buyers to find a comparable space in the same area for the same price, he said.

But the end may be in sight. “Our client believes everything will be resolved shortly,” said Jeffrey Zwick of Jeffrey Zwick & Associates, the attorney for owner Boaz Gilad. He declined to comment further.

Buyers in Limbo at Prospect Heights Building [Brownstoner]

4 Comment

  • Unfortunately, these poor buyers are working with the wrong community of developers. If there is any way for them to get out of this, DO IT! Even if you’ve invested years of your life, it’s better to walk away and not own in problem ridden building. Get out ASAP.

  • adam_dahill

    One of my clients is one of these buyers. It’s been months of updating documents, rate locks and the constant back and forth with the developer. Building is 100% sold and everyone has been sitting on their hands waiting to close for months. It’s a great location and the price they got was pretty good but the waiting has been wearing on everyone. Not as bad as a brownstone-condo conversion I did a few years back in the North Slope which was in contract for 1 1/2 years. Upside is that the market is appreciating so fast they are building equity without even closing, that’s if they close. The client in North Slope ended up with an appraisal close to 200k over their contract price by the time they closed. Hopefully there is an upside to this fiasco.

  • I’m in the midst of the same type of developer induced delay in the South Slope. Been in contract since November, no end in sight. Developer is inexperienced and non-responsive. If you come into contact with developers JOE & AMY MILLER, run as fast as you can. They installed kitchen cabinets that are uneven (won’t fix), bathroom mirror too big and can’t be centered (won’t fix it). Who knows what other problems there will be due to their lazyness and inexperience. Total hack.

  • adam_dahill

    I wanted to post a follow up to this. Closings have started. My client is closing on Monday the 28th.