The Pros and Cons when Buying a Condo in Florida
Condominiums and townhouses offer an affordable option to single-family homes in most areas. But consider all the facts, or as many as you can think of, before you make a decision. Knowing all the pros and cons when buying a Condo in Florida – before you put the signature down on the contract – can avoid many sleepless nights. We can help with the navigation!
Storage: Some condos in Florida have storage lockers, but usually there are no attics or basements to hold extra belongings. You have to de-clutter before moving into a condo; moving from a 4 bedroom home into a 2 bedroom condo will be a challenge.
Outdoor space: Yards and outdoor areas are usually smaller in condos. If you like to garden or entertain outdoors, this may not be a good fit. However, if you hate yard work and don’t want to be a slave of your home, this may be the perfect option for you. You still have that little outdoor space called balcony which will be occupied by your cat. But hey, if your cat likes it why not you! Can you use your grill? Not always. Some let you use a small electric grill, other condos have special places in the yard where you can grill.
More Than a Pool
Amenities: Many condo associations have swimming pools, fitness centers, tennis courts, and other facilities that would be very expensive in a single-family home. You pay only a fraction of the cost because you share with your fellow condo dwellers. That is beautiful and feels good.
Maintenance: Many condos have onsite maintenance personnel to care for common areas, do repairs in your unit, and let in workers when you’re not home.
Security: Many condos have keyed entries and have secured entries to the amenities. Plus, you’ll be closer to other people in case of an emergency.
Reserve funds and association fees: Although fees generally help pay for amenities and provide savings for future repairs, you will have to pay the fees agreed to by the condo board, whether or not you’re interested in the amenity or not. So, if you don’t like tennis, don’t like to swim in “cozy” pools and don’t like leaking roofs – why do you want to pay for it. However, by law the association is bound to collect money for costly repairs in the future (roof, pool etc.). Each condo- owner pays a fraction of the monthly HOA fee into a reserve fund. In case something happens down the road, the community can pay for the repairs without imposing special assessments.
There are even more pros and cons when buying a condo in Florida.
Resale: The ease of selling your unit is more dependent on what else is for sale in your building since units are usually fairly similar. Single-family homes are usually more individual. If there are others for sale in your area, they probably won’t be exactly like yours. So, if your unit is up to date, or more modern than the other units
on the market, your unit will most likely sell faster or for a better price. The same is true when your unit is an end unit. Opinions are divided when it comes to first floor or second/third floor units. Is there an elevator in the building? Fine, that would solve the problem. Otherwise it depends. First floor units seem to be more favorable.
Freedom: Although you have a vote, the rules of the condo association can affect your ability to use your property. For example, some condos prohibit home-based businesses. Others prohibit pets or permit only certain dog sizes. Read the covenants, restrictions, and bylaws of the condo association carefully before you make an offer. Some condos have this special “Alcatraz” feel if you know what we mean. If you can live with those rules – fine. If you do not agree – run! Don’t expect to get somehow along with those rules. You will not and changing them is not an easy task.
Proximity: You’re much closer to your neighbors in a condo or town-home. Look at the profile of other owners and be sure you’ll be comfortable. If possible, try to meet your closest prospective neighbors. If you like it quiet and easy going, but your next door neighbor is a party lion with busloads of friends coming and going every day, well, that might not be the right fit. It is the same if you are addicted to certain hobbies, like playing your trumpet at midnight. A single family home with a little space between your neighbors would probably help.
Weigh in your pros and cons when buying a Condo in Florida. For further questions, please feel free to contact us below.