Condo-Buying Walkthrough: Choices When Buying A Condo
The search for a condominium requires buyers to make decisions regarding how they would like to approach the process and which markets they wish to explore.
Real Estate Agents
Just like looking for a single-family home or other types of property, those in the market for a condominium can either execute a search themselves – using web sites like www.fsbo.com or www.forsalebyowner.com - or they can work with a qualified real estate professional. There are advantages and disadvantages to both, and each buyer must decide which method is right for him or her. Whether one decides to work with a real estate agent or not, making certain broad choices will help narrow the search for the ideal property.
The location of the property is the primary consideration and one of the broad choices that will help buyers define their real estate goals. Price range will likely be a factor in deciding on the geographic location, neighborhood and particular development. Aside from price, other choices provide reasonable degrees of flexibility to condo buyers[E1] . Where young professionals may prefer an urban setting, close to work and night life, retirees may desire being on the beach or close to a golf course. Factors such as location of one's friends, family, job, and other interests will help buyers choose a general location to begin the search for the right condominium.
Once the geographic location has been decided, the various neighborhoods should be evaluated. Specific attributes make each neighborhood unique, and condo buyers should spend time driving or walking around the different neighborhoods to find the one that seems most desirable. Unique features might include the variety of dining and entertainment choices, access to public transportation, proximity to hospitals or universities, or availability of recreational opportunities, such as boating or golf.
Each neighborhood may have several condominium developments from which to choose. Once a preferred neighborhood has been decided upon, buyers must make other general choices to help narrow the search.
Style of the Property
The style of the property is another major consideration when finding the ideal condominium. Some condominiums are large high-rises similar in appearance to office buildings. Others developments are clusters of two-story buildings that more closely resemble traditional homes. The style is important in terms of appearance, but also in terms of function. If a condo unit owner wants quick access to the outside, a low-rise or duplex-style condominium could be a good choice. Alternatively, if one wants to be part of a large, dense community or have a big view of the city, a high rise might be ideal.
The physical characteristics of the building are another consideration. Some buyers will prefer older, more traditional-looking buildings, while others may favor modern and stylish properties. The style of the property's grounds should be factored in, as well. Manicured lawns and meticulous landscaping may be a priority to some people, while others prefer a more natural environment.
Age of the Property
Advantages of newer developments include sought-after upgrades such as hardwood floors, granite countertops and high ceilings, as well as up-to-date architecture and functionality. Older developments, on the other hand, have probably completed all construction phases and finished any planned common areas. In addition, they are likely to have an established community and may have larger units for the same money.
SEE: Top 4 Things That Determine A Home's Value
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