If you’re looking to take your first step into home ownership but aren’t quite ready for the space and maintenance that comes with a single-family home, then buying a condo might be perfect. Often coming in at a lower, more affordable price point and boasting some sort of shared amenities, condos are a great option for first-time home buyers who are looking to get into the real estate market. While the home buying process for a condo might look the same as that of a single-family home, there are a few specific things that you should take into consideration when deciding if condo life is right for you.
We’ve highlighted a few key things that you should know before entering the housing market and buying a condo.
Work With an Agent Familiar with Condos
One of the most important things to do when beginning your search for the perfect is to find a real estate agent that is familiar with the condo landscape. Condos often come with documents outlining strata regulations and property restrictions that are important to review and understand before making a purchase, so having an agent that understands how these regulations and restrictions work is important. An experienced agent should know about the different condo developments in the area you’re interested in and will be able to warn you of any issues that may arise at a later date. They will also be able to help guide you through the entire home-buying process, which is important especially for first-time buyers.
Consider Your Lifestyle
Before starting your home search, it’s important to first look at your current lifestyle. Determine what you’re looking for in a home, and what makes the most sense for your lifestyle. If you either have pets or are looking to get a pet in the future, a condo might not be the best choice for you as they are often smaller in size and can come with restrictions on the number of pets you can have and how big they are. If you’re looking for a smaller space and enjoy the shared amenities that often come with condo buildings, then a condo might be exactly what you’re looking for.
Think About Your Ideal Amenities
Most condo buildings or complexes come with some sort of shared amenities, which can range from gyms to swimming pools to theatre rooms. When searching for condos you might be interested in looking at, don’t forget to think about the kinds of amenities you’ll want to have in your building. Buying a condo means buying the use of these amenities, so don’t be afraid to add your top choices to your wish list. Even if amenities like a swimming pool might not interest you, they might be worth having, especially because they can increase resale value.
Review Fees & Regulations
While condos are known for being low maintenance for the homeowners, many of them come with monthly strata fees that help to cover maintenance costs for the building. These fees can include things like garbage removal, snow removal, landscaping, and other general maintenance of the common spaces. Some condo buildings might also come with regulations relating to what you can and can’t do to your condo, restrictions on pets, and noise restrictions. Taking the time to review the different fees and regulations before making a purchase is crucial in finding the right condo for you.
Whether you’re a first-time buyer looking to get into the real estate market for the first time or are simply looking to downsize from your current home, these tips will help make the condo buying process a breeze!