If you’re looking to purchase real estate in Vancouver, you’ve likely seen listings for condos.
For those unfamiliar with this term, “condos” are units within a building (called a “condominium”) that are individually owned. Condo owners share and jointly own common spaces, like hallways, parkades, and amenity rooms.
In Vancouver, the average size of a condo unit is 769 square feet. The average cost to buy a condo is just over $800,000.
There are plenty of good reasons to buy a condo in Vancouver. However, there are also things you should keep in mind to make sure this kind of property is right for you. Here are some pros and cons you should consider.
The Pros of Buying a Condo
- It’s not your job to maintain the property
When you live in a condo, other people take care of building maintenance. As an owner, you’ll pay a monthly fee that contributes to your strata’s operating budget. But the strata is responsible to hire contractors for routine items and source quotes for larger repairs when needed.
- A condo is more affordable than a house or townhouse
Condos are the prime target for most first-time home buyers. Since they’re smaller spaces and usually only have 1 to 2 bedrooms, they’re less expensive than most houses and townhouses.
- You’ll have great, easy access to an urban centre
Most condo buildings are in medium- to high-density zoning areas. As a result, the typical condo owner has ready access to malls, groceries, restaurants, and public transit. If walkability is an important consideration for you, a condo could be a perfect fit.
- The amenities you want, inside your building
Many condo properties include a fitness centre. Some even have a pool. These amenities – along with common library, lounge, or meeting room spaces – can simplify your life and allow you to connect easily with your neighbours.
The Cons of Buying a Condo
- There are extra costs beyond your condo purchase
Every condo owner pays a monthly fee to their strata. These funds provide for routine building maintenance and contribute to reserves for unexpected expenses. In addition, special assessments are sometimes necessary to cover substantial upgrades, such as roof replacements.
- You’ll have to play by the rules
Every condo property has a set of bylaws that govern what owners can and can’t do with their unit. For example, some strata limit how many pets you can have in your condo or restrict what kind of renovations you can make to your condo.
- You can’t always control your interactions with neighbours
Condo residents share walls, common hallways, and floors or ceilings with other people. Not everyone is cut out for this kind of communal living. So, if you buy a condo, be mindful that you won’t always get to choose when you will see or hear your neighbours.
- You might not like how common property is handled
In a condo building, all common property matters are overseen by the strata council. You may not always agree with their decisions. When larger ticket items arise, you’ll get to voice your opinion and cast a vote. But even then, the majority will rule the day.
Call the Condo Experts
Rick Clarke and the Real Estate Valley team understand that everyone’s situation is unique. The good news is that we’re condo experts. Reach out and let us help you determine if a Vancouver condo is the right choice for your needs.Posted by Rick Clarke on