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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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We did speak with the JASCO (one of the owners), and while it is true that they could have said anything to convince us, we were quite pleased just by the fact that they promptly called us back and answered our questions.

So there may still be some findings at the inspection phase, but we are more and more comfortable about going forward.

Posted on: 2011/10/25 13:14
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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I bought from them on a rehab job in Montclair -actually the first unit. They used individual contractors and managed that job themselves. Although we were not a gut-rehab job as yours is, they did a fine job and we ended up with a great property. As with any deal, especially with a pre-construction sale, perform your due diligence and document/photograph as necessary. You'd want to do that with any developer.

Posted on: 2011/10/24 21:33
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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You would think so, right? Well, at this time, let me just say that we haven't gotten answers to all of our questions from the realtor. I would give Jasco a call.

Posted on: 2011/10/24 20:17
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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I'm sure the owner of the building set up an LLC for condoizing of the building and it's in the care of Jasco with their business address for tax and condo management purposes. I don't think that means that Jasco did the construction. They could have, but I'm sure if you call Jasco you could find out who actually did the work. there wasn't a big sign outside the building?

Aren't these questions you can ask the realtor?

Posted on: 2011/10/24 20:03
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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I'm learning new things here. Jasco must have coordinated all aspects of the construction, like hiring designers, engineers, contractors, etc. So who actually did the physical work of construction, I don't think I can find out.

But of course, we can at least have the interior inspected before the closing, so maybe that's best we could do to go forward.

Is there anything else we should find out before completely committing ourselves?

Posted on: 2011/10/24 19:48
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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It looks like JASCO and WEINGARTEN Group, LLC are run by the same people.

Posted on: 2011/10/24 19:34
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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On the first page of the Public Offering Statement (and Full Plan of Conversion to Condominium Ownership) document, it says:

Filed by:

Sponsor:
277 York Street Realty, LLC
C/O Jasco Management
47 Mill Street
Jersey City, New Jersey 07302

I'm not sure what this means. I think that the owner of the building established an LLC for the sole purpose to renovate and sell the units in the building. So, there is no other building that this LLC had worked on for us to examine their reputation or quality of work.

C/O suggests that they are part of Jasco. So Jasco did the actual physical work? If so, is it bad?

Posted on: 2011/10/24 19:26
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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The Weingarten's are JASCO.

Posted on: 2011/10/24 19:03
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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It seems that the current owner of the building had set up an LLC to work on the construction. Since nobody lives in the building at this moment, the Board of Trustee of the condo association consists of three people with the same last name, "Weingarten". I'm guessing that this family bought the building and established the LLC to renovate it. Has anyone heard the name?

Posted on: 2011/10/24 18:53
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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Quote:
The managing company is JASCO, and we are a bit worried because we have read a lot of negative reviews. But we realize that it's all about weighing pros and cons.


I think having JASCO for your condo management versus being a renter and having JASCO as the property management will be different.

Who is the owner of the building that did the condo conversion?

Posted on: 2011/10/24 17:32
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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Thanks for the comment.

We didn't notice the noise. We have been in the building a few times, but the only time there were other people in the building was at the open house, during which there were a lot of people in a unit on the 1st floor. If we had entered another unit on the 1st floor, perhaps we might have noticed it. But we didn't think of that then.

I suppose some level of noise is unavoidable as long as we live in city. But I do hope our neighbors will be as considerate as we are.

Yes, we did see the painting in the foyer, and it's beautiful. Details like that are throughout the building. It's apparent that people who built this 120 years ago, treated it as a piece of art and that they did not cut any corners. We feel it's better than a new construction with cheap material, but that's just our personal preference.

According to the report, the area around Van Vorst Park is not a flood zone. This was a bit of surprise to us. We currently live near Hamilton Park, and our neighbors have told us that there was a flood a few years ago. I've heard that the basement was flooded then, but the first floor wasn't. We took a look at the garden level unit, which is still under construction, but it does not appear to have been under water recently.

I wonder what kind of consequence there may be even the area is flooded....even though our unit may stay above water?

Posted on: 2011/10/24 14:17
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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I went to the open house and saw these condos as well. Very well put together--original doors and great old-tile bathrooms, nice flooring. The one thing that concerned me is that I could hear everything through the walls. IN a building with 11 units, that could present a problem. That being said, they are beautiful. (Did you see the paintings in the foyer?)

One thing to look into, has the basement (parlor) ever flooded? I don't know if you were here for the hurricane, but parts of JC were under 3-5 feet of water.

Posted on: 2011/10/24 13:41
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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Thanks for the comments.

We did talk to someone in the neighborhood, and they told us that there was a fire a couple of years ago in the building....although there is no visual sign of that any more as far as we saw.

Objectively speaking, we are not sure if this is over priced or just right (we are not a real estate expert), but having looked at NY Times real estate listings for six months for pretty much every day, we know that this type of opportunity doesn't come around very often (This, we are quite sure....about price vs. proximity to the Grove St PATH and to Van Vorst Park).

We also reviewed the engineering report, and according to that, the building is in an excellent shape. For the first 5 years, there is nothing major scheduled to be repaired or replaced (and the maintenance fee is assessed to be adequate to ensure maintenance in coming years).

The managing company is JASCO, and we are a bit worried because we have read a lot of negative reviews. But we realize that it's all about weighing pros and cons.

It has central AC, and they installed a new electrical system (400amp). We think that it's plenty. It has washer and dryer in the unit, and we don't know if we should be excited about that more than the park across the street.

What we are struggling to understand is the fact that the first unit reserved is on the fifth (top) floor. There is no elevator in the building, but you could have a nice view of lower Manhattan. That's nice, but we don't feel that it's worth the extra $. We are wondering if the people who reserved that unit are young athletes of some sort. We are not lazy, but having lived on the 3rd floor walk-up, we know that coming home with a lot of grocery is a pain in a neck. So we chose a unit closer to the ground, and we feel that we made the right choice.

Posted on: 2011/10/24 13:28
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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I checked out the prices for this on-line (did not go to an open house) and they are HIGH. ~$500/sq. ft. Those are 2006-2007 prices not 2011 prices. The units look decent but certainly not high end. Doesn't look like they have central A/C and heat from the pictures.

Posted on: 2011/10/22 0:32
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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Not sure if it was that building or the one next to it but there was a fire about 3 years back. Where are the prices listed?
The neighborhood is great.
Good Luck & Congratulations!!

Posted on: 2011/10/22 0:12
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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Thanks for your response.

There are eleven units in the building, and there are no more rental units. The building was vacated completely sometime ago (I don't know when), and out of 11 units, I believe 3 have been reserved, ours included (garden level unit is still under construction).

This is part of what I've wondered. How did the building owner manage to get every tenant out? No one protested? What was the building like when it was a rental apartment. Also, how long has the building been vacated? It must have taken them at least six or more months to completely renovate the interior. So, I would imagine that at the beginning of 2011, some people were still renting it. What happened to them, I wonder.

Also, the seller is trying to get at least 6 units sold, at which point, the title is transferred to the condo association. If they can't sell at least six units, it seems that they will have to postpone the closing. I don't know how this will play out nor do I know if this is a standard practice.

I hope someone could comment on this.

Posted on: 2011/10/21 13:42
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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I don't know anything about the building structure's past. I would be concerned with the amount of resident homeowners vs. renters when you do get in there. How many units are in the building. It is a nice neighboorhood and at least you are furthest away from from the busy corners and streets of Montgomery St. & Jersey Ave. Congratulations and good luck in your new abode !

Posted on: 2011/10/20 20:33
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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Thanks, according to the disclosure, a new 1,000 gallon tank was installed last year. It doesn't say that the old one was removed, but I'm pretty sure that they had to remove the old one before putting the new one.

Posted on: 2011/10/20 18:14
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Re: Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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I remember them having a HUGE (very old) oil tank in the basement. I hope that was removed.

Posted on: 2011/10/20 17:39
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Madison (Condo) on the Van Vorst Park
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My husband and I have put down a deposit on a new condo, located at the corner of York and Barrow on Van Vorst park, called the Madison.

We are 95% excited and 5% scared (this is the first property we are going to own together; we currently rent in downtown).

This is an old rental building (built in 1890's) renovated to become a condo this year.

I know the general area fairly well, but I don't know the history of the building when it was a rental apartment because I've never paid attention prior to this.

Could anyone comment on the building's recent past?

Thanks in advance.

Posted on: 2011/10/20 13:42
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