Buying Landmarked Property

Buying Landmarked Property

Did you know that buyers of landmarked property can receive violations for changes prior owners made to their property? The cost to remove these violations can be significant.

Across New York City, there are more than 31,000 properties that are landmarked or included in a historic district. Both types of property fall under the purview of the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC), a city agency charged with protecting New York City’s architecturally, historically, and culturally significant buildings.

The exteriors of landmarked buildings cannot be modified without approval from the LPC. Many common building repairs—including repainting using new paint colors, replacing fences, repointing brick, and replacing windows—require approval from the LPC.

If you are considering buying a house or commercial building that is landmarked, pay close attention to these types of minor building repairs. If the seller modified the building without a LPC permit, you may receive a violation for this work after you close on the property. The LPC may then require you to redo the non-approved work, and can also issue fines of up to $5,000.