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WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF CONDO LIVING?

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Advantages:

  • Protection from arbitrary rent increases.
  • Ready availability of financing as a single-family home.
  • Range of prices, locations, types of structures, sizes, and architectural features available.
  • Availability of amenities such as swimming pool, tennis courts, health clubs, community centre, saunas, hot tubs, exercise rooms, sun decks, etc.
  • Benefits of home ownership in terms of participation in the real estate market and potential growth in equity.
  • Individual ownership of living units with security of tenure and permanence of occupancy.
  • Pride in home ownership.
  • Enables people of moderate and middle income levels to own their own home.
  • Freedom to decorate interior of unit to suit personal tastes.
  • Enhancement of security by permanence of neighbours and, in many cases, controlled entrances.
  • Elimination of many of the problems of upkeep and maintenance often associated with home ownership, since maintenance is usually the responsibility of a professional agency or manager.
  • The fact that it is often considerably cheaper than buying a single-family home because of more efficient use of land and economy of scale.
  • Investment opportunity for profit if selected carefully.
  • Good transitional type of home between rental apartments and single-family houses for growing families or singles or couples; conversely, good transition for downsizing “empty nestersâ€? who wish to give up their larger family house.
  • Reduction of costs due to responsibilities for repair and maintenance being shared in many cases, as some owners will contribute considerable volunteer work.
  • Enhancement of social activities and sense of neighbourhood community by relative permanence of residents.
  • Elected council that is responsible for many business and management decisions.
  • Participation of owners in the operation of the development, which involves playing a role in budget-setting and approval, decision-making, determination of rules and bylaws, and other matters affecting the democratic operation of the condominium community.

Disadvantages:

What are the disadvantages of a condo community?

  • Real estate appreciation is generally not as high as for a single-family house, simply because it is the land that appreciates in value in a single-family house, and the flexibility of use of that land. However, there are many exceptions to this general rule in metropolitan settings.
  • May be difficult to accurately assess the quality of construction of the project.
  • Unacceptable loss of freedom may be experienced through restrictions contained in the rules and bylaws. For example, restriction on the right to rent, restriction on pets, etc..
  • People live closer together, thereby potentially creating problems from time to time; frequent problem areas include the “five p’s”, pets, parking, personality, parties, and people.
  • Flexibility may be affected if circumstances require that the condominium be sold in a limited time, as condominiums generally sell more slowly than single-family houses.
  • Money is tied up in the condominium ownership, which may affect immediate liquidity needs in certain circumstances.
  • One could be paying for maintenance and operation of amenities that one has no desire or intention to use, eg swimming pool, recreational centre, etc.
  • Management of the condominium council is by volunteers, who may or may not have the appropriate abilities, skills and personality.
  • There is possible apathy of owners, so that it is always the same people who are able and wiling to serve on council.
  • Some elected councils behave in an autocratic fashion.
  • Mix between living in a single-family house and in a landlord-tenant relationship could cause conflict and frustration depending on people’s needs, expectations, and past housing experience.

MORE HELPFUL INFO FOR YOUR RESEARCH !

To help your research and save you time and hassle, check out our free checklists and forms on our "Worksheet" section, as well as the stats, surveys, and reports, useful links, etc, on our "Helpful Info" section, both shown on the index on your left.

Copyright © 2014 , Douglas Gray, LL.B. All rights reserved. Any reproduction of the material contained in this website is strictly prohibited. E&OE (Errors and Omissions Excepted). Please refer to Copyright and Disclaimer at bottom of website page. Refer to Books section for related information.

 

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