Are you considering buying a condo? Maybe you want more flexibility than your apartment offers. Maybe you aren’t ready for homeownership or you want to sell your home and downsize.
Whatever your reasons may be, living in a condo can be a very fun, comfortable, and rewarding experience. There are plenty of reasons to choose a condo over an apartment or a traditional home. They are typically cheaper than actual homes, have great amenities, have security, and many more great features.
However, it’s important to consider that buying and living in a condo is not like buying a home. So, before you make a purchase, it’s important to know what to look out for.
Make sure you ask these five important questions when buying a condo.
Questions to Ask When Buying a Condo
What questions do you need to ask before buying a condo?
As condo associations have their own rules, fees, and other qualities, it’s important to ask these five critical questions when looking for your new condo.
1. Are There Any Fees?
Condo associations are much like homeowners’ associations. Most condos require you to pay a monthly fee, often ranging between $200 to $500. High-end condo associations will cost even more than this. It’s important to know what your monthly financial obligations will be before moving in.
You should also ask what this fee covers. Fees are usually applied to maintenance, landscaping, cleaning, and similar expenses. Since you’ll be paying these fees on a monthly basis, be sure you’re okay with how your money will be spent.
2. Who Manages the Property?
Like living in an apartment, it’s important to know that you can trust and rely on your condo’s management team.
In some condo associations, there are no property managers. Instead, the community is collectively managed by the residents. In other cases, your condo will be managed by a traditional property management company.
Be sure to interview your condo manager and talk to your potential neighbors to see what they have to say about the quality of the management team.
3. Are There Any Assessments Coming Up?
Condo assessments are occasional payments that you have to make in addition to your monthly fee. These assessments are usually meant to cover repairs and improvements to the property.
Be sure to ask if there are any assessments coming up in the near future so you aren’t surprised by a bill after you move in.
4. What is Covered by Insurance?
Next, you should make sure to ask what is covered by your condo association’s insurance policy. If possible, ask to obtain a copy of the policy yourself for review.
Be sure to check the estimates to rebuild, how much it costs to bring the property up to code, and whether or not your personal belongings are protected in case of damage. If not, you may want to consider taking out your own supplemental insurance policy.
5. What are the Community Rules?
Last but not least, what are the rules and regulations of your condo association?
These rules will usually indicate basic things like where you can and can’t park, whether or not holiday decorations are permitted, whether you can rent out your condo, and more. Not only will these rules impact your experience living in the condo, but they can impact the potential resale value of your home.
Buying a condo can be a very attractive alternative to buying a home or renting an apartment.
By making sure to ask these five questions when buying a condo, you can make a more accurate and informed decision.