The easiest way to avoid paying the Mansion Tax in NYC is to request a Hauseit® Buyer Closing Credit. While this strategy won’t technically absolve you from paying the tax, the savings you’ll pocket from the closing credit will usually cover your Mansion Tax bill and leave you with money to spare.
Another way to avoid the Mansion Tax as a buyer in NYC is to ask the seller to pay it. However, you’ll want to keep in mind that the only way a seller will agree to this is if you as the buyer have some serious leverage. If you find yourself in a bidding war or a property has only been on the market for a few months, there is virtually no chance the seller will take your request seriously.
On the other hand, it’s not impossible for the seller to pay the Mansion Tax if you’re thinking of buying into a new development which is falling behind on its sale targets. Similarly, there’s a chance a seller will pay the Mansion Tax if their listing has been on the market for more than 6 months and/or the apartment has serious marketability issues caused by property condition, a poor layout, unrealistic pricing or poor advertising exposure.
The final way to avoid the Mansion Tax is to cap your search below $1 million. If you’re open to renovating, you could look for a property which is priced below $1 million simply because it needs a gut renovation.