From modern kitchens to Olympic-sized swimming pools, there are plenty of reasons to purchase a condo. Yet buyers may let those benefits blind them from the potential downsides of living with a shared wall. Before getting your heart set on one type of housing over another, it's time to consider both the good and the bad.
Space and Location
A condo will usually be in lower demand than a single-family home of the same size, which can be appealing to those who want the space without sacrificing their savings. Condos also put owners closer to the city or even directly in the center, making them a convenient choice for people who like to explore the surrounding streets.
However, condos also typically come with association fees that can take a huge bite out of an owner's budget. If the economy takes a turn for the worse, they're also more likely to be abandoned (causing fees to rise for those who stay.) When searching for a home, potential buyers need to be aware of any potential charges they may be asked to pay. Some associations may leave out information about assessments or one-time charges for special events or emergencies.
Time, Money, and Energy
Some people love the idea of keeping up a property. To them, it's a satisfying challenge to learn more about how to fix a roof or what soil will work best with the garden they're hoping to plant. Condos are for people who would prefer to keep their maintenance schedule to the bare minimum. There are no driveways to repave, no shingling to replace, and no lawns to mow.
While condo owners will still need to deal with (and pay for) a variety of cosmetic and even plumbing mishaps, they can save their budgets from a number of major repair costs. But buyers need to remember that not every complex is as proactive about their repairs. Make sure to choose an association that has an impeccable reputation for keeping up the structure as well as the grounds.
Condos give people a chance to meet more people on a daily basis than they normally would in a single-family home, which can be either a pro or a con. However, unpleasant or disrespectful neighbors don't just make you unhappy, they can lower the property values for everyone. In addition, condos may start to feel claustrophobic. Noise from above, below, or across can filter into daily living to the point where watching television or going to sleep seems impossible.
Even if an apartment is completely soundproof, the sounds coming from the city or streets below can force owners to choose between fresh air and silence. Buyer should also consult the rules of the complex before making an offer. Some are extremely strict about what owners are allowed to do, and buyers need to make peace with the policies beforehand.
Should You Choose a Condo in Edmonton?
Edmonton has great home choices. Among them is considering a condo. While condo living isn't for everyone, it can be great for people who want a more luxurious lifestyle with lots of amenities. It's also good for people who don't like to focus on things like yard maintenance or upkeep. With a condo, you won't have to do any of that. You can just enjoy where you're living, and take advantage of all the great amenities you'll get in the complex you've chosen. Based on what you like, you'll want to make sure you pick the right complex for you and your needs.
Some complexes cost more than others. Of course, the number of amenities that are offered to you generally affects that. The more amenities you get in your complex, the more you'll be paying for the unit you buy. While there's nothing wrong with that and it's generally to be expected, it's also something you should be aware of. It can help you make a good choice, because you don't really want to pay for amenities you don't need or that won't be of any use or interest to you.
It's possible to find condos upward of $1 million, but there are many choices that are lower in price. Overall, your budget should dictate location first, and unit second. You can't change the location of the real estate you buy, so getting into a complex or a neighborhood where you really want to be is important. If there are things about the specific condo unit that aren't perfect for you, those may be things you can change at a later date. In the meantime, you can get settled in and see about making the condo you chose into a home where you feel safe and comfortable.
Buying a Condo With a Condominium Reserve Fund Study
What is a condominium reserve fund? It is an insurance policy or a savings account that is held by the condo's board or property management firm. The purpose of the facility is to make sure there will be money that can be spent in special or necessary expenditures that may affect the structure in the future. Thus, the condo reserve fund is an important consideration before buying a condo unit. Many condos in Edmonton have it.
It is ideal that Edmonton condos go through so-called reserve fund study at least every 5 years. In that process, an engineer will inspect and evaluate the building and present a report that will indicate any need for possible repairs or additional construction. The condo board and property management team must analyze that report and prepare budget allocations. Those parties must also base structural decisions on that document. Logically, if the process is properly and effectively handled, individual condo owners will be spared from huge, unnecessary, and unexpected repair bills in the future.
It is advisable that potential condo buyers look for an Edmonton condo package that includes a regular reserve fund study. This can help make sure that the future of the investment is secured. However, it may be difficult, if not impossible to fully comprehend the semantics of typical reserve fund studies. The condo board and property management group may not also disclose every detail of the study.
In this regard, services that specialize in condo document review and ratings reports can be highly recommended. Fortunately, there are many of those that operate across Edmonton. Home buyers should hire a condo document and rating reports reviewer, and be sure to choose only the most reputable of them all.
Comparing Condos to Other Real Estate Investments
If you’re purchasing real estate in Edmonton, you’ll have to decide what type of place is going to meet your needs the best. Many people go with an Edmonton loft or an Edmonton condo or single-family home. They are all affordable options while offering different benefits. Here is a look at the differences in each to help you decide which would work best for your lifestyle.
For those that crave space, lots of room to move and freedom, Edmonton Lofts are perfect for this. They have high ceiling heights and the living areas are typically unstructured. There’s plenty of room to breathe, move around and stretch out.
Typically, the living space, bedroom and kitchen areas are combined into a large, open area. For those that work from home, you can easily set up an area for your office rather than feeling stuck in a small room. A two-level loft where the bedroom is upstairs is perfect for those since you can live and work downstairs.
The style of a loft is going to appeal to an edgy or eclectic personality. They are typically historic that feature exposed brick or concrete inside. This is because they are usually warehouse conversions. You’ll love the high ceilings and exposed beams inside to give you that city feel.
Edmonton Single-Family Homes
If you have a family to think of, you might be better off living in one of the suburbs. Most of the homes on the outskirts of Edmonton are extremely spacious, and there's usually plenty of outdoor recreational space for the kids to play around in, on weekends and after-school. In addition, Edmonton's residential neighborhoods are known for their low crime rates, and their peace and quiet.
As the homeowner, you still have to shoulder the cost of repairs and maintenance. But the advantages include that you don't have to pay for parking fees, as most homes come with a garage or at the very least, a parking space. The downside, of course, is that living in the suburbs is nowhere near as convenient as the city centre. While you might have a few grocery stores around, heading out to a bigger shopping mall, or going to the cinema will inevitably involve spending some time travelling.
Condos are going to appeal to those who prefer structure and organization. They’ll have separated bedrooms and enclosed spaces rather than the open space of a loft. If you work from home in a condo, most have a den space with closets that works well for an office space.
Condos appeal to a classic, traditional personality. You can get a brand new condo or get something older that’s been renovated. This allows you to really decorate it to match your personality while lofts will offer less flexibility.
Depending on your personal style and preferences, choosing between a loft, single-family home, or condo in Edmonton can be simple. You can’t go wrong with either of these affordable options.
Buy an Edmonton Condo Today
Buying a Devon home or condo can be the best move a buyer ever makes, but the trick is to enter the negotiations with eyes wide open. Living in a condo is often a trade-off between privacy and convenience. Because condos take some time to appreciate, it's more profitable for homeowners to enjoy living there for as long as possible.