City Code Compliance Update

Keeping up with New York City’s ever-changing building regulations is a full-time job. That’s why our compliance department is constantly on top of new Local Laws and other safety issues that impact the properties we manage. Due to the expansion of the City’s Façade Inspection regulations, properties need to inspect and repair their exteriors on a regular basis to ensure the safety of balconies, parapets, brick, stone and other materials that overhang the sidewalks. The City’s Benchmarking program continues to expand in an effort to reduce carbon emissions throughout the five boroughs. Starting in 2020, buildings will be given “grades” from A to D, based on how energy efficient they are. These ratings may impact property values, adding to the incentive to improve energy conservation efforts in areas from lighting to heating and air conditioning.

Another new City regulation requires that all automatic elevators have “door lock monitors” installed and operational by January 1, 2020. The purpose of the monitors is to prevent elevators from operating unless the all the doors are closed on every floor of the elevator shaft. It also prevents the exterior elevator doors from opening if the elevator cab is not at that floor. The new safety requirement is designed to prevent anyone from being caught in an elevator door while the car is moving, or from falling into an open elevator shaft.

At Douglas Elliman Property Management, client safety and building compliance are of paramount importance. Your building manager is working to ensure that your property meets all City regulations. If you have any questions about building code compliance, don’t hesitate to contact your manager or our office at 212-370-9200.

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A new City regulation requires that all automatic elevators have “door lock monitors” installed and operational by January 1, 2020.

NYC’s New Climate Mobilization Act

On April 22nd, 2019 Mayor DeBlasio signed into law the Climate Mobilization Act (CMA), affecting all buildings over 25,000 square feet throughout New York City. This is the City’s third significant piece of legislation designed to reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions in New York City by 80% by the year 2050. The CMA follows “plaNYC2030” in 2011 which eliminated #6 oil and spurred the oil-to-gas conversions in NYC buildings, and the “oneNYCplan” in 2015, which introduced Local Law 84 (Benchmarking) and Local Law 87 (Energy Audits and Retro-commissioning), both designed to further incentivize buildings to reduce their energy consumption and carbon emissions.

The first year of enforcement is 2025, and will be based on each building’s energy usage in 2024, compared to a citywide baseline of 2005. Most buildings will require significant capital expenditures to become compliant with these new regulations. In an effort to help building boards and owners finance these upgrades, the New York City Energy Efficiency Corporation (NYCEEC) is creating a low interest, long-term funding program that will hopefully be available to all housing sectors.

It’s imperative that all buildings begin now—if they have not already—to learn about their current energy efficiency level and to plan and begin to implement a long-term strategy of compliance in order to avoid paying fines when the enforcement period begins in 2025. Every CMA Plan should begin by reviewing the building’s LL84 Benchmarking report, which will reveal its EnergyStar score and upcoming Letter Grade, which will be issued in 2020. By verifying the parameters used in the Benchmarking report, buildings can be sure that the score is accurate; scores take into account number of units, number of bedrooms, square footage and other facts about the building, so it’s important to be sure the City has the correct information. Each building’s Energy Audit and Retrocommissioning Report also includes a series of Energy Reduction Measures, with projected savings, estimated budget, and payback period. This is a key list of where to begin to reduce energy consumption and improve the building’s score.

We will keep all of our properties apprised of the ongoing developments of the Climate Mobilization Act. The goal of reducing emissions is a worthy one, but it will certainly take time, effort and significant investment. At DEPM, we will work continuously with our building boards and owners to help meet these requirements as they continue to evolve.

For more information on this legislation, visit this link:

Climate Mobilization Act

Multifamily Solar Array

It’s imperative that all buildings begin now—if they have not already—to learn about their current energy efficiency level and to plan and begin to implement a long-term strategy of compliance in order to avoid paying fines when the enforcement period begins in 2025.

 

Emergency Preparedness

You’ll soon be receiving an informational booklet developed by the New York City Fire Department focusing on Fire and Emergency Preparedness for Apartment Building Residents and Staff. This booklet addresses everything from packing a “Go Bag” to have ready in the event of an evacuation, to fire prevention tips and weather emergencies. It also talks about safety equipment that your building must have in place, such as sprinklers, smoke detectors and fire alarms.

With natural disasters such as Hurricane Sandy still fresh in the minds of New Yorkers, and current events featuring mass shootings and terror attacks all over the world, we live in a time when being prepared for the unexpected is more important than ever. At DEPM, we value the safety of our building residents and staff, as well as the properties they live in, and we work closely with all City agencies to ensure that proper equipment and strategies are in place in order to protect against potential dangers.

Emergency Booklet

The NYFD has developed this booklet outlining emergency procedures and prevention. All apartment residents should be receiving a copy in the mail.

City Code Compliance Update

Keeping up with New York City’s ever-changing building regulations is a full-time job. That’s why our compliance department is constantly on top of new Local Laws and other safety issues that impact the properties we manage. Due to the expansion of the City’s façade inspection regulations, properties need to inspect and repair their exteriors on a regular basis to ensure the safety of balconies, parapets, brick, stone and other materials that overhang the sidewalks.

The City’s Benchmarking program continues to expand in an effort to reduce carbon emissions throughout the five boroughs. Starting in 2020, buildings will be given “grades” from A to F, based on how energy efficient they are. These ratings may impact property values, adding to the incentive to improve energy conservation efforts in areas from lighting to heating and air conditioning.

Another new City regulation requires that all automatic elevators have “door lock monitors” installed and operational by January 1, 2020. The purpose of the monitors is to prevent elevators from operating unless the all the doors are closed on every floor of the elevator shaft. It also prevents the exterior elevator doors from opening if the elevator cab is not at that floor. The new safety requirement is designed to prevent anyone from being caught in an elevator door while the car is moving, or from falling into an open elevator shaft.

At Douglas Elliman Property Management, client safety and building compliance are of paramount importance. Your building manager is working to ensure that your property meets all City regulations. If you have any questions about building code compliance, don’t hesitate to contact your manager or our office at 212-370-9200.

Top of the Woolworth building

New regulations from the Department of Buildings—from façade maintenance to elevator safety—are designed to protect residents and avoid accidents.

New NYC Local Law Addresses Elevator Safety With 1/1/20 Deadline

The latest update to the NYC Department of Buildings Elevator Code requires that all automatic elevators in the City have “door lock monitors” installed and operational by January 1, 2020. The purpose of the monitors is to prevent elevators from operating unless the all the doors are closed on every floor of the elevator shaft. It also prevents the exterior elevator doors from opening if the elevator cab is not at that floor. The new safety requirement is designed to prevent anyone from being caught in an elevator door while the car is moving, or from falling into an open elevator shaft.

Depending on the type and age of the elevators in your building, the cost of this upgrade may be minimal or substantial. Elevators installed since 2009 probably already have door lock monitors in place, which may or may not be activated. If they have not been activated, the adjustment may be a relatively simple software or hardware update. If your elevators were installed prior to 2009, the fix will be more complex and considerably more expensive. Generally, the cost to install door lock monitors can run between $10,000 and $30,000 per elevator, depending on the complexity of the installation.

We are working with all our client buildings to ensure that they meet this important safety requirement within the City’s timeframe. Installations must be done by a licensed elevator service company. Permits are required, and plans must be signed off by a licensed engineer and filed with the City. The Department of Buildings must also visit each building and test every elevator before it is considered in compliance with the new law. Failure to comply can result in fines and elevator shut-downs.

At Douglas Elliman Property Management, client safety and building compliance are of paramount importance. Your building manager is working to ensure that your property  meets all City regulations. If you have any questions about the new elevator requirements, don’t hesitate to contact your manager or our office at 212-370-9200.

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NYC regulations require that all automatic elevators be equipped with door lock monitors by January 1, 2020.

 

DEPM’s Closing Department is Dedicated to Helping Clients Through the Maze of Buying, Selling and Leasing

By Ian Mayglothling, Director, Closing Department Ian Mayglothling new High

The Douglas Elliman Closing Department is comprised of 14 Transfer Agents, 2 Closing Coordinators, 2 Administrators and 1 Lease Renewal Coordinator. The Department assists applicants and current owners with a variety of transactions such as sales, sublets, transfers of ownership and refinancing requests.

Transfer Agents are the main point of contact and assist applicants and their representatives throughout various transactions.  They offer guidance regarding individual building requirements and policies and how best to meet them. Because communication is key, our agents acknowledge the receipt of a package within 24 hours, and notify the relevant parties of any missing or deficient items no later than 7 business days after receipt.

Once a sale has received Board approval, Douglas Elliman’s Closing Coordinators take over.  Our Closing Coordinators communicate with the parties to schedule all in-house closings, ensure that all necessary documents and materials are in place, personally attend all closings and handle all of the post-closing work necessary to finalize the change of ownership in the building’s records. The support our Closing Coordinators provide to our Transfer Agents is invaluable as it allows our Transfer Agents to focus specifically on assisting our clients to navigate sometimes complex Board approval processes.

Douglas Elliman’s Closing Department is somewhat unique in that we have a dedicated Administrative team that supports the Transfer Agents and Closing Coordinators. The support the Administrative team provides allows other members of the Department to more easily focus on their primary responsibilities without distraction.

Recognizing that lease renewals are a vital part of Property Management, Douglas Elliman has a dedicated Lease Renewal Coordinator whose main function is to track expiring leases, generate lease renewal notices, process lease renewal requests and keep Douglas Elliman’s Property Managers up to date on the status of lease renewals in each managed property.

Douglas Elliman Property Management embraces new technology companywide and the Closing Department is no exception. Over the past few years, we have moved to a secure online platform that allows buyers, sellers, tenants and owners to complete and submit applications electronically and pay any required fees electronically. In addition to eliminating the need to print and deliver hundreds of pages of documents we are easily able to ensure that all fees are collected before a transaction moves forward.

Buyers, sellers, owners, tenants and brokers are able to collaborate remotely and securely from any location to complete and submit applications to the Douglas Elliman Transfer Agents. Client Boards can then review applications digitally from any location with each Board Member having their own unique and secure login credentials.  The platform displays applications in a very clean and user friendly manner that allows for easy navigation through the use of a series of bookmarks.

Douglas Elliman’s Closing Department works diligently to ensure that our clients receive expert service, attention to detail and the benefit of years of experience to handle each transaction properly and efficiently.

We look forward to assisting you.

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Douglas Elliman’s Closing Department works diligently to ensure that our clients receive expert service, attention to detail and the benefit of years of experience to handle each transaction properly and efficiently.

Douglas Elliman Property Management Ranked #1 in NYC

DEPM has been ranked #1 among Residential Property Managers in New York City. This year’s rating by The Real Deal Magazine is based on independently researched data provided by the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development.

Two years ago, Douglas Elliman won the Holy Grail of property management assignments: Co-op City. With 35 buildings and 15,000 units in the Bronx, the Mitchell-Lama project is the country’s largest cooperative housing complex,” reports The Real Deal, adding, “Douglas Elliman Property Management, which took the top spot with 28,022 units, is part of the residential brokerage giant (Douglas Elliman) with 113 offices across the country. In Manhattan, Elliman scored several new high-end condo developments, including 150 Charles Street, 215 Chrystie Street and 111 Murray Street.”

As we continue to add new properties to our portfolio, our ability to pass along valuable volume discounts to all of our client buildings brings more value than ever to our boards and residents. We are thrilled to be ranked #1 in NYC and we are dedicated to maintaining our reputation for offering the best property management in the industry. Since 1911, DEPM has been focused exclusively on the business of property management. Our managers have the experience and expertise to handle any issues that arise, from the most basic budget planning to the most complex property upgrades and maintenance issues. To read the full article at The Real Deal, click on this link: https://therealdeal.com/issues_articles/top-property-managers-nyc/Real Deal 2018

Financial Technology Benefits Our Boards and Owners

By Harris Bornstein, Chief Financial Officer, Douglas Elliman Property Management Harris Bornstein

It’s a very exciting time to be involved in Financial Technology here at Douglas Elliman Property Management. We deliver a variety of online services to our residents, Board Members and property vendors to make their financial transactions easier, faster and more secure than ever. These technology improvements have also reduced waste, by moving from paper to digital delivery.

We are well on our way to transitioning all of our 45,000 apartment residents from mailed invoices and check payments to online billing and e-payments. This digital system eliminates the processing, printing and mailing of monthly bills and also allows residents to pay their monthly fees instantly from anywhere, with no mailing fees, at any time of the day. As a result of these measures, we have reduced the waste stream by over 20,000 pieces of paper per building per year.

In addition, board members and owners can view financial statements and activity online anytime, anywhere, from their own computers. This offers the benefit of optimizing cash flow by being able to see income and expenses in real time. When it comes to approving and authorizing payments on building invoices, board members can do it all by using our online portal with redundant levels of authorizations and security. We maintain bank protocol systems to ensure that your property’s financial data will always remain secure.

Our suite of online financial systems offers an increased level of control and transparency to our residents and boards, while helping them save time, reduce waste and avoid costs. Instant digital information sharing allows board members to securely review financial information on their own schedule, while residents have more flexible options for payments and account maintenance.

DEPM’s Rental Property Management Division is Growing Fast

By Ryan O’Connor, Vice President and Managing Director, DEPM Rental Division 

As one of the most well-known and respected names in real estate, Douglas Elliman offers the best property management services in New York City. Our portfolio of over 375 properties throughout the Metro area includes buildings of all kinds, from pre- and post-war co-ops and condos to brand new rental properties with all the latest amenities and services. We are one of the oldest management firms in the business, and our reputation has been earned through our 100+ years of experience.

Over the past few years, our rental management division has experienced tremendous growth, with over 15 rental communities signing on with DEPM within the last year alone. Our portfolio of rental communities runs the gamut. We’ve taken on and/or launched various brand new luxury rental high-rises, working with developers and owners offering some of the most high-end amenities in this or any other market.

In addition, our rental communities include walkups in the East Village and Lower East Side, affordable units in Gowanus, and family-owned blocks of rentals in Midtown. In short, we work with property owners of all kinds to supply the best rental management available on the market today. When you enlist the services of Douglas Elliman’s rental division, you are enlisting elite customer service. Our managers are trained to cater to the needs of our residents and client’s alike, and our financial analysts are trained to create the detailed financial reporting our rental client’s require.

In the fiercely competitive NYC rental market, we know that operating efficiency is a chief priority for all owners. To that end, we take all the management tasks off of our client’s plate; from monthly reporting and collections, to energy purchasing, budget forecasting and renewals, we use our buying power to the benefit of our clients’ bottom line.

Most importantly, we understand that resident retention is of paramount importance. This is why, regardless of whether our renters live in a 100-year-old walk-up or a community with state-of-the-art amenities, when the Douglas Elliman plaque is outside their front door, they expect their management team tobe their ultimate amenity. We work every day to deliver on that expectation.

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NYC to Rate Your Building’s Energy Efficiency

Under the new Local Law 33 of 2018, New York City will begin to assign letter grades to buildings rating them on their energy usage, and by 2020 that information will become public.  Under the City’s expanded “Benchmarking” regulations—set out in Local Law 133 of 2016—owners of all buildings over 25,000 square feet must report water and energy consumption annually through the City’s online portal (https://www.energystar.gov/buildings/facility-owners-and-managers/existing-buildings/use-portfolio-manager). Failure to report can carry fines of up to $2,000 per year.

The City will use the reported information to create metrics to track and compare the energy efficiency of similar buildings, and ultimately will release a rating for each property, which will be available to the public. A better rating will have a positive impact on property values, giving owners an incentive to take action to cut back on water and energy consumption, as part of the City’s goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80% between 2005 and by 2050.

We at DEPM care deeply about energy conservation and have instituted many improvements in our client buildings, including converting boilers from oil to gas, replacing incandescent lights with energy saving LED lights, installing new windows and more. Our managers are working with all their properties to implement conservation initiatives and to prepare for the energy grades. For more information on the City’s Benchmarking program, visit https://www1.nyc.gov/site/buildings/business/benchmarking.page

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New York City will soon begin giving out letter grades to all buildings over 25,000 square feet, rating their energy efficiency. This “Benchmarking” info will become public in 2020, and could impact property values. Now’s the time to to implement energy-saving programs in your property.