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5 Questions to Ask When Buying a New Condo

Brand new condos for sale are quite appealing for many buyers. The appliances are brand new, the lobbies are pristine, and the elevators are fast and dependable. There are also some modern amenities that you can certainly look forward to using, such as a fitness center and an infinity pool.

But before making a decision, you need to ask questions to make sure you set the right expectations. The usual questions involve features, costs, and amenities. But those may not be enough. You also have to ask about things that you may have not considered before, including:

  1. What’s the neighborhood like? This is perhaps the most important question that some condo buyers forget to ask. Even if the condo unit is fantastic and all the amenities like the gym and the swimming pool are useful to you, you have to make sure that the area surrounding you is suitable to your lifestyle.

Use Google Maps. You can see right away whether you have conveniently close supermarkets and dry cleaners nearby. If you see empty lots, then there will be construction in the near future and that can affect how you live and the resale value of your unit. You should also take a look around the neighborhood at different times of the day, to see how you will live there day in and day out.

  1. How’s the soundproofing? A great condo can be ruined when you have noisy neighbors and sound that carries from their unit to yours. It can lead to bad blood, arguments, and an unfriendly environment. Noise from the street can also add to your stress.

Ask the developers directly about how they plan to deal with soundproofing. Many experienced developers put in a soundproofing underlayment in the flooring, so your neighbors above you don’t bother you with their thumping feet. You can also ask about the number of panels in the window to keep out the noise from the traffic.

  1. Any rental or selling restrictions? Each condo development has its own rules regarding renting and selling. In some cases, you may not be able to rent out your unit for a year after closing. Even when you’re able to rent out the space, the rules may state that only owners are able to use the amenities.

Some rules can discourage real estate flippers who buy condos just to sell them later. After all, these flippers may end up competing with the developers when they try to sell their unsold units. That’s why some condo buildings will specifically state that you won’t be able to sell the unit for a certain period of time.

  1. Are all the units residential? In some cases the building may have residential condo units sharing floors with offices, stores, and restaurants. This can be good for you if you own one of the commercial establishments. But then again these places can also add to the noise, plus some restaurants can really stink up a place rather quickly.
  2. Are there concessions for you? Developers often give bonuses or hidden perks to certain buyers. They may not offer them right away, but it doesn’t hurt to ask if they have concessions to offer. These perks don’t really affect the sales price of the units. Rather, they can provide advantages and savings for prospective buyers. Perks can include free parking space, or you may not have to pay certain taxes.

Buying a condo unit can be very exciting for first-time buyers, but you need to decide with your eyes wide open. By asking a lot of relevant and essential questions, you can manage your expectations accordingly.

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