Condos are a great way to get yourself into the property market because of their lower cost. However, because the condos are in a communal development, you have to be sure that the condo will offer you enough autonomy to make buying the place worth it. These questions here can give you an idea of whether condo living is for you, so be sure to ask both your real estate agent and condo association representatives.
Who Takes Care of and Decides Adjacent Landscaping?
Most of the exterior landscaping will be the responsibility of the grounds-keeping crew hired by the condo association. However, landscaping that is right by your own condo door might be an exception. Find out at what point the landscaping turns from the association's responsibility to yours. It could be that all exterior vegetation is not something you have to worry about, except for whatever you have on your own decks and balconies.
But if you do find that there is some exterior vegetation that you'll have to care for, find out what freedom you have regarding the type of vegetation you have there. If you have to have specific plants there, those might take more water and care than you're willing to give. If it turns out you can choose the plants that will go there, then you can choose ones that don't require more attention than you can pay to the plants.
What's the Process for Addressing Ceiling Leaks?
Condos share walls and roofs, so if you have a roof leak, you can't just up and replace the roof on your own. You'll have to go through an approval process and possibly get the agreement of everyone else in your building. Find out if there is a point at which a leak is not bad enough for the condo board to approve replacement (this can be an issue, though with increasing attention on mold development, your condo board hopefully won't be this restrictive). You want to have a condo where the board is responsive and has a practical process in place for immediately repairing or replacing leaky roofs.
Where Does Your Autonomy End?
You can decorate the interior of your condo pretty much however you like, as long as it doesn't impact your neighbors, but the exterior is a different matter. Do you have the ability to add locks to your front door if you want, or do you have to keep those uniform with the rest of the complex? If your door doesn't have a viewer/peephole, can you add one, or do you need permission? What are you allowed to do on your deck or balcony with regards to plants, barbecue grills, laundry lines, and more? You need a clear idea of how far you'll be able to go in making the place your own.
Start talking to your real estate agent about these issues early. You want to spend your time looking at condos that you'll really want to purchase, and knowing that you're seeing condos that allow you the autonomy you want will make your search easier.Share
13 May 2017
I have never been one of those people who loves to shop, which is probably one of the reasons I had such a difficult time choosing a house. I wanted to find the perfect little place for my family to grow up, but that was easier said than done. I knew that I wanted to work with a professional who could really grasp my vision and put me in a place that I would love, so I started focusing on finding the right professional. After a brief search, I was able to find a team of real estate brokers that I knew would do a great job. This blog is all about choosing the best real estate agent for your personality.