Beware: Hidden risks in condominiums

Lately I’ve been getting a lot of questions about things to look out for when buying a home. In this post, I’ll talk about condominiums, since I have been hearing some horror stories of how people aren’t made aware of the financial health of the building when they purchase, or their needs aren’t properly understood by their Realtor to find a building that is a good fit.

Let me get something straight – not all buildings are the same. Every building is very much unique, even if it may have the same builder or have the same property management company as another building. There are a lot of considerations when searching for your perfect home, not only within each individual unit, but also when deciding if a building is right for you. Knowing what is expected of a building’s residents ahead of time can help eliminate surprises and disappointments down the road.

Luckily, there is a document called a Status Certificate which outlines the financial health of a building, one measure being the Reserve Fund. It also includes a copy of the condominium bylaws, where condo owners and renters are expected to abide by. These rules can dictate what, if any, pets are allowed in the building or what items residents are allowed to place on their balconies, such as barbecues.

Make sure you speak with a prudent Realtor and trustworthy experts before making a purchase. Contact me today for further information and advice.

Ashley Lo | Real Estate Advice, Real Estate Solutions

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