Deciding to buy a condo is a pretty big decision, and even though the majority of condo owners are extremely happy with their investments, there are a few things to keep in mind before buying a condo on your own.
- First, it’s important to make sure that you fully agree with the rules that the entire condominium abides by — and this doesn’t mean that you’re capable of just tolerating the rules for a while. Because a condo is like a house and an apartment combined, you’ll own your personal unit completely but you’ll be expected to follow the rules set by the community of condo owners. This could mean anything from limitations on home remodeling and renovations, to being prohibited from owning dogs or cats.
- Second, if you still haven’t narrowed down where to buy a condo, keep in mind that most condominiums are located in urban areas, within walking distance of shops and attractions, or near natural scenic locations (like on the waterfront). Most people choose to buy condos simply because of the convenience; the biggest advantages of owning a condo are that you don’t have to worry about maintenance and landscaping tasks, you can choose how many fellow condo neighbors you want to have (unlike apartments, most luxury condos are under 100 units, and some are even as small as 10 units), and many communities have features like a concierge desk and a swimming pool for condo owners. There are tons of options to choose from — and that’s what makes buying condominiums so appealing — but before buying a condo for yourself, try to narrow down which features are most important to you.
- And finally, remember that you’ll have to put money down or have loan payment plan set up, similar to buying a house, but that there will be extra fees that you’ll regularly have to pay, similar to renting an apartment. Experts say that a safe estimate for the initial money down payment is about 20% of the entire cost, and that potential condo buyers should consider the complex’s previous ownership fees (which should be readily available through the management) in order to analyze the financial implications of buying a condo.
Most importantly, take your time with the decision and make sure that you really like the property before buying a condo! Condos tend to be a little more expensive than their apartment counterparts, but this is because you actually own the property rather than just renting it. Purchasing a condo might just be the best decision you can make, but you’ll never know until you start looking around! Find out more here.