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What are the down sides of buying a condo?

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Answered 2009-10-19 22:28:26
Condo 'downsides'

There are a few:

  • Having to abide by the conditions, covenants, rules and restrictions, and other governing documents, enforced by the association board, which could include restrictions on:
  • Pets/ Plants/ Exterior colors/styles/shutters/window types/lights; Number of visitors allowed at a time; Potentially limited parking spaces
  • Escalating monthly assessments, and potential special assessments, usually a one-time assessment to pay for a major repair, such as exterior siding replacement, new paving, new roof, etc.
  • Possible lack of privacy, depending on soundproofing.

Check on the age of the property, and hire a condominium-savvy building inspector who can spot potentially costly needed maintenance. Obtain the last 3-5 years of budgets and assessments history and board meeting minutes, in order to make an informed decision about how well-funded reserves are, the status of the reserve study, the financial audits and so forth, on-going issues and so forth.

Attend a board meeting if at all possible to see how the Board and owners work together.

It could be a positive living experience if the condominium community is well run, and you share values and life styles.
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