ALL ABOUT CONDOS

All About Condos

Condo Questions

We’re lucky that in the city of Toronto we have such a huge variety of condos available. Picking the condo that is right for you is going to come down to a lifestyle decision. Before going out to look at buildings I like to meet with my clients and discuss their individual needs and wants as there are many different things to consider when looking to purchase a condo:

  1. The size of the building –high rise or more boutique style, soft or hard loft, condo townhouse
  2. The age of the building – this often affects the size of the individual suites and can affect insurance rates
  3. Amenities – some people prefer a paired down building, where as others want to make full use of a large gym, party room, or guest suites
  4. Concierge or no concierge
  5. Outdoor space – balcony, rooftop terrace or green space to enjoy
  6. Pet policy
  7. Parking
  8. Your down time activities

With so many variables to consider, having someone who is familiar with the buildings, styles and benefits of the area can be the key factor in ensuring your successful condo ownership.

 

HOW DO I KNOW IT’S A GOOD BUILDING?

Both house and condo buying require a certain level of compromise. The landscape of the condo market is one that is changing on a yearly basis. This past year we saw more buyers returning to the condo market as they were being priced out of the housing sector. We have also seen an increase of very high rise towers with suites being purchased by foreign investors and renting the spaces out. It’s best for us to sit down and discuss your exact needs so that I may suggest possible buildings. I often have inside information about which buildings may be of concern or which have a better resale value.

While online forums might provide some info – the information we have access to as Realtors is often more reliable overall. And more importantly, the best objective tool for determining if a building is good is the status certificate. This is a document which speaks to the overall “health” of the condo building and its corporation. It outlines budgets, savings (reserve funds), large potential projects which could cost owners additional funds, any potential lawsuits and rules and regulations for the building. Since these documents are not available until after we have made an offer, it is smart to again work with a Realtor who is familiar with buildings in the city.

Condo or House?

We are very fortunate in the city of Toronto to have different housing options.  So, if the thought of owning a home seems daunting or just not the right fit for your lifestyle there are other options. The primary being a condominium.  One of the biggest benefits to condo living is it’s turnkey lifestyle and essentially lack of maintenance.  This hassle-free living does come at a price though.  Condo owners pay monthly fees referred to as ‘condominium fees’.

So when deciding between a condo or home, it’s best to consider your lifestyle, how long you plan to live in the space and your budget.

Here are some advantages to each:

Condo Pros:
– Turnkey lifestyle
– Not responsible for any maintenance to the outside structure
– Great entry into the housing market
– Security
– Flexibility to be ‘right in the heart’ of Toronto
– Views of the city
– Amenities all in one place
– Predictable costs
– Underground parking (if applicable)

Home Pros:
– Outdoor space
– More creative reign over renovating
– Larger space for hosting family or friends
– Opportunity to expand family
– Ability to create a ‘work from home’ office
– Connecting to a neighbourhood or local community
– No restrictions on pet ownership

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