A condominium is a large building made up of several units that are individually owned.
While units are private properties, condos have areas within the complex that is open for communal use. These shared amenities may include pools, gyms, and productivity hubs.
Condo living has a certain charm to it. You get to have your own space without worrying too much about maintaining it. That’s why many people invest in buying condo units to live in or to rent out.
Condo vs. House: Which is Best for You?
Here are some comparisons between condo and house living. Let these help you decide whether condo living is the best way to go.
The first point of comparison is the price. Condo living is cheaper than house living. The average price of a condo unit in Calgary is $268,141 while a detached house is $624,161.
But of course, it has its drawbacks as well. A lower price for a home means that your space is smaller. For one, you won’t get your own yard in a condo unit. Most condos don’t even have a balcony. If they do, you’d have to pay more.
One of the benefits of condos is maintenance. Condos have in-house maintenance so you don’t have to worry about hiring professionals to fix the damages in your unit.
You also won’t have to worry about the upkeep of common areas in the condo. All you’re responsible for is your own unit.
In house living, you’d have to take care of everything—from small repairs to major renovations like reroofing. You’d also have to clean your whole house because no one will do it for you unless you hire a cleaning company. But that would be another expense.
Condo living comes with a price, though. You might not have to worry about the maintenance of amenities outside your unit, but you’ll have to pay for their upkeep.
This comes in the form of association fees that all tenants have to pay every month.
Despite all these, purchasing a condo is still cheaper than purchasing a house.
Tips for Purchasing a Condo
The process of purchasing condos is easier than that of houses. Here are some tips to guide you as you purchase your first condo.
Secure Your Budget
The most important thing to do is to secure your budget for your condo. You have to be ready for down payments and closing costs in condo units. It’s also a good thing to have enough money for at least a month’s deposit.
Then, you also have to be ready for any extra costs that you might encounter. It’s always better to have extra savings than to fall short and not get your dream unit.
Prepare for Mortgage Application
When buying a condo, you’ll most likely have to apply for a mortgage. Make sure to prepare all the necessary paperwork that your lender might require for your application.
It takes time to get and process documents. You wouldn’t want a lot of delays, right?
You also have to make sure your credit score is in good shape when you apply for a mortgage. Try to lower your debt loads to increase your chances of getting your mortgage approved.
Find a Team You Can Trust
When purchasing any property, it would be best to have a real estate agent working with you. They would help you make sure that you’re getting your money’s worth in any property you plan on investing in.
Look for realtors that are knowledgeable and experienced in condo sales. It would also be great if they’re familiar with the local market so that they can give you the best deals.
A home inspector you can trust is also a must when purchasing your first condo. They will make sure the unit is in good condition. They are also important in finding possible problem areas in the unit.
A home inspector will also give you advice on which renovations to focus on so that you could increase your property’s value.
A condo unit is a great property to invest in if you feel like you’re not quite ready for a house. Find a condo that checks most, if not all, of your requirements in a home. Comfort is still the top priority in purchasing a condo you could live in.
If you’re planning to rent out a condo unit, make sure it caters to the needs of most people. Whether you’re looking for long-term tenants or Airbnb guests, your unit should be comfortable and inviting for everyone.
Again, here are some tips to consider when purchasing your first condo:
- Secure your budget for the down payment and closing costs. Have extra money to account for extra costs you might stumble upon.
- Prepare all the documents that your lender might ask for when you apply for a mortgage. Keep your credit score in good condition to get approved faster.
- Find a realtor and home inspector you can trust. They will help you throughout the process of purchasing your condo.