Diary of “NEEDY” Rowhouse…Reaching a Boiling Point.


Happy Thursday to the followers of my needy rowhouse posts. At this point, I’m not only counting down the days to the arrival of Spring (which we’re probably all on the same page with that), but personally I’m counting down as to when I can close on my needy rowhouse. That being said, I wanted to just bring you up to speed as to where I am on the journey, and hopefully pass along a bit of information and knowledge to those considering a house purchase in Newburgh in the near future too.


Seems the boiler was installed sometime in the mid 2000’s (around 2006), which is a good thing and a permit was issued by the City to the heating contractor for the installation work to be done. Here is where the lesson comes in. In the City of Newburgh (and most cities), there is not only a need to have a permit issued, BUT then the completed work has to be recorded with the City, so a certificate of compliance can be issued. Also in Newburgh, the attorneys share a checklist of “the municipals” before the closing is set. Part of the checklist includes any outstanding violations and believe it or not, not having the final paperwork “recorded” for the completed boiler work falls into that category. And even though it was all done and inspected at the time a property cannot convey until that paperwork is recorded.  So readers, that is where it is right now. But when all is said and done, it’s a good thing that this is part of the process to protect a new owner.

Secondly, and this is important, when a property conveys, a title insurance policy is issued to cover a lender (bank) as part of the customary financing process. But a new buyer has the option to purchase an owner’s title policy (which I highly recommend). Just to clarify, a title policy is a standard part of the closing cost process and required by the lender HOWEVER, that only protects the lender, if a title issue arises after closing. Unless you purchase a second owner’s policy also, you (as the new owner), are not protected if a title issue comes up. The good news is that if purchased together before the closing (lender and owner policy), then the owner’s policy is discounted.


Now here is the interesting part. With historic rowhouses, the attorneys are looking to see how the language is covered in the title policy regarding ownership of “party walls” (the walls that are common in- between the properties.)  Currently there is no language included in the policy that explains that. The attorneys are making sure the correct language is in place prior to closing. Again, it is something that legally protects you as the new owner and trust me, with purchasing a needy rowhouse, you’ll have enough on your hands so you  don’t need any issues challenging that to surface.

Lastly readers, it was brought to my attention that there was some confusion (by a reader) regarding why I am buying my needy rowhouse and I kind of had my integrity challenged as to my intentions for it. So let me take this opportunity, again, to clarify that here (though I did mention it in previous posts). I am purchasing my rowhouse as an “investment property”.  The needy rowhouse is a compact two family currently and will STAY a compact two family. I’ve always dreamed about having a 2 family  historic rowhouse from as early on as my days living in Brownstone Brooklyn. There I owned a coop in Park Slope in the early 1980’s,and sold that about a decade later. I then purchased another coop in Fort Greene in the early 2000’s, as I was so taken by the beautiful architecture and wonderful diversity there. I thought it was perfect for my son and future daughter in law to live there and learn and enjoy the dynamic of the city and it also allowed them to finish their education and start their careers. In those time frames, I also had the thrill of seeing those neighborhoods flourish, both with owner occupied buyers and with investors believing in being part of a bigger picture to make things better. That being said, I am also a smart investor and feel (as I’ve said before) that Newburgh’s time is NOW!

I personally (and with the help of good neighbors), want to make my historic 2 family rowhouse along with the Heights neighborhood part of the solution in delivering a strong message of hope and not be part of the problem in causing despair. I currently live in Binghamton, NY and am extremely involved in the revitalization there. I write a monthly column entitled “I Believe in Binghamton….Downtown Rising” (check out my facebook page). It is also that energy that I most definitely want to pay forward to help restore hope in Newburgh.

Let’s face it, Newburgh is a city that needs all of our concerted efforts and attention no matter where geographically we may be bringing it from. That is the beauty of a blog and the internet. There are so many ways now to be integral participants of the revitalization, whether personally purchasing a property there or even praising it from afar, as long as it is genuine and from the most important destination, our hearts. In closing as I always say in my Needy Rowhouse posts, until the next time….I HEART Newburgh!


3 Comment

  • While it is disappointing that you will not be moving into the Heights, it’s still a good thing that you’re doing! The house will look great and be a good home for two lucky tenants.

    After all, there are plenty of people who ‘heart’ Newburgh without living here (YET! ) including our on Newburgh Restoration blog lady 😉

  • Hi Hannah…Hope all is well and THANK YOU for your warm welcome to the Heights Neighborhood that you expressed to me from my very first “Needy Rowhouse” post that I wrote. I am really looking forward to close on the house and I truly want to make it better than it currently is. I feel fortunate that I found the house on Overlook and to be part of a very special enclave of Newburgh. I’m gonna be looking to you all in the neighborhood for some handyperson/contractor contacts to help me execute some projects that i have planned to be done. Also, thank you for your inspriing presence in the community too!!

  • Thanks so much Hannah…I do look forward to being part of Newburgh’s continued revitalization and building on the strength and growh of the Heights enclave that people like yourself have planted such important seeds with hard work and focused vision.