Only 90 minutes from Toronto, Burlington, Ontario, is a better option to purchase a condo as it has square footage per dollar. Simply put, you’re getting more condos for your buck. But how do you go about buying a condo in Burlington? Here’s a simple guide you can follow as you start your search.
Do you know the Ins and Outs of Condo Ownership?
Unlike a typical detached home where you would own the entirety of the building, condo owners only own a specific unit within the building as a whole. Prospective buyers should know what the unit ownership boundaries are. Will you have to pay for certain exterior elements (like windows on an apartment-style building or bricks on a townhouse building), or will the condo board be responsible?
Speaking of the condo board, know how much the monthly condo fee will be for any condos you’re looking at and what it covers. Most will cover the same items, but the cost may vary from board to board.
When you become a condo owner, you are part of the board – so you have rights . . . and responsibilities. Some responsibilities may include paying out of pocket if there aren’t enough funds to repair or maintain roof damage.
What To Look For Before You Buy
When someone views a Burlington condo, whether empty or staged, most people start to imagine what the space would look like with their own furniture and trimmings. Some condos, however, might have rules around changing too much of the unit. Even something seemingly simple as changing one door type for another might have specific regulations or barriers.
Take the time to visit condos at various times of the day. This is especially important to make sure there’s no noise from other units leaking into yours or to ensure there is enough traffic accessibility.
Keep an eye on the common areas in a condo – not just the specific unit being sold. Is the lobby maintained? Do all the doors and locks work? Is the security system up to date? Make sure to walk around the entirety of the building, inside and out, to get an idea of how maintenance is kept up and repairs addressed.
Equally important to the home is where your home is located. Does the neighbourhood match what you’re looking for? Is it close to schools, the office, and the amenities you need to improve your life: grocery, health, entertainment? If you rely on public transportation, is the condo building near enough to a stop?
Ask All the Questions
Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Ask neighbours you may see, and interview the property manager and the condo board of directors.
When you speak to the property manager, ask them about their communication, how they do it and how often. Ask about their skills and experience. When you speak to the board director, ask about the reserve fund. Where do they invest that fund? Be sure to ask about the turnover rate in the condo and among the board of directors. A very important question is whether the corporation has been involved in any lawsuits. Did you know that if they were involved in a lawsuit and they lost, all condo owners go toward paying a settlement? Make sure to review the liability insurance coverage as well. This is all information you are well within your means to ask.
Above all, know that there are qualified REALTORS® who are well versed in the Burlington condo real estate market and can help you toward condo ownership. These agents will know the right questions to ask, the neighbourhoods that will match your lifestyle and work to get you into a condo you’ll love.
Contact a Full-time REALTOR® today!
Looking for an experienced REALTOR® who specializes in the Burlington real estate market? At Royal LePage Burloak we are here to help you with your real estate needs!