My name is Michael Roché, Real Estate Broker and Owner of Length x Width (formerly known as “Area New York”); a full-service real estate firm located in the Financial District. I have specialized in FiDi’s real estate market since 2004 and would be happy to share my knowledge and experience in real estate with you.

It is my sincere desire to make selling your SBT apartment stress free and rewarding. I will make sure your apartment looks as good as it did when you moved in before we list it for sale, you only get one chance to sell for the highest and best price and first impressions are of paramount importance.

In addition to over 20 years of experience as a real estate broker specializing in Lower Manhattan, I was born and raised in Southbridge Towers. This combination gives me a unique perspective that allows me to utilize my relationships with SBT management, maintenance, security, the board of directors, and longtime residents in order to provide the highest quality service to my clients.


  • Apartment Valuation
  • Professional Photography
  • Digital Floorplan
  • Apartment & Window Cleaning
  • Painting (if necessary)
  • Minor Cosmetic Repairs (if necessary)
  • Furniture Removal (if necessary)
  • Virtual Staging
  • Customized Marketing Plan
  • Open Houses (weekend & weekday)
  • Private Viewings
  • Skilled Negotiations
  • Board Package Expertise
  • Estate Sales
  • 24/7 Support & Guidance


Q. What exactly is the Transfer Fee or Flip Tax?

A. The flip tax is a fee paid by the seller on a housing co-op transaction typically in New York City. It is not a tax, and not deductible as a property tax. It is a transfer fee payable upon the sale of an apartment to the co-op.

Flip taxes are considered a method to help raise money for a co-op’s overhead expenses without raising the maintenance fees or assessing a flat charge to all residences. Charging the fee to those who are leaving the building seems to be the most politically feasible.

The SBT “Transfer Fee” or “Flip Tax” will be 28% on the first initial sale of your apartment. The “Transfer Fee” or “Flip Fee” will drop from the 28% level to 2.5% for the second sale of the apartment (and every subsequent sale thereafter).

Q. Can I leave the shares allocated to my apartment in my will to anyone who I wish?

A. There are very specific guidelines outlined in the Cooperative Offering Plan that you should be aware of –

1) Subject to Board Approval and the Apartment Corporation’s right of first refusal, you may seek to leave in your will the shares allocated to your apartment to anyone you choose. There is no guarantee that the Board will approve the proposed transfer. (Page 4, Number 1 at the bottom of the page in the Cooperative Offering Plan)

2) Except for transfers between a participating shareholder and his/her spouse or domestic partner, or to an adult child 18 years or older) who has been living in the apartment for at least 2 consecutive years, a transfer fee (flip fee or flip tax) 28% will be due at the time of the transfer (Page 17, middle of the page).

In the event the shares associated with you apartment are left to a grandchild or any other person named in the will, the board can reject occupancy! The heir will always keep his/her financial interest in the apartment and would be able to sell the apartment (Subject to approval by the Apartment Corporation and the Apartment Corporation’s right of first refusal) and keep the proceeds of the sale after paying the Transfer / Flip Fee and any additional costs of selling.

Q. What are the Annual Mortgage Interest & Real Estate Tax Deductions?

A.  Pursuant to the provisions of Section 216 of the Internal Revenue Code, a tenant stockholder of a cooperative housing corporation may be entitled to deductions for a proportionate share of interest and real estate tax paid or incurred by the housing corporation. Should you have any questions regarding the application of the equivalent per share deductions in your tax returns, please consult your personal tax advisor. 

Present and past stockholders who were not stockholders of the Corporation for the entire year of 2021 are entitled to a proportionate share of the deductions for the period of their ownership.

Q.  What is the Commission Rate you offer to SBT sellers?

A.  5% for SBT shareholders.

While 6% has been the “standard’ amount that brokerages charge for sales properties, there is not much of a difference between a 5% listing and a 6% listing from the perspective of the brokerage community. A commission amount less than 5% might adversely affect the outcome of the sale as it could discourage brokers with qualified buyer clients from showing them the property. Brokers expect a co-broke commission of 2.5% or 3% based on a total commission of 5% or 6%.

According to the New York Department of State Division of License Services; The commission or compensation of a real estate broker is not regulated by statute or regulation, therefore the amount and terms are negotiable. A real estate broker shall never offer a property for sale or lease without the authorization of the owner. Therefore, prior to the listing or marketing of a client’s real property, it is incumbent upon the real estate broker and the client to mutually agree on a reasonable rate of compensation.

Michael A. Roché
Length x Width
Principal Broker
Office: (212) 227-8281  |  Mobile: (917) 392-3534