7 Things to Check When Buying a Condo
Whether a condo apartment or condo townhouse, be sure to look into these 7 things to check when buying a condo. (HINT: your agent and lawyer will do this for you).
1. Ask to see the Condominium's Reserve Fund Study and Inspection Report. These will offer an idea of the overall maintenance plan to determine the condition of the building and common elements.
2. Review the financial documents:
- Annual operating budget;
- end-of-year financial statements;
- status certificate.
3. Be clear about the services and utilities (gas, hydro, water, TV) that are covered by the monthly maintenance fee, and the additional cost will be for you.
4. Find out if a Special Assessment is on the horizon. For example, the parking garage may need some work.
5. Look for "hidden" costs. Did the developer take out a long-term lease on building fixtures, such as boilers, to save on capital costs? If so, when do the leases come up for renewal?
6. If it's a condo townhouse, ask what municipal services, such as garbage pickup and snow removal, the condo receives. Even though you pay for these services through your property taxes, condos sometimes have to assign this work to contractors and you may end up paying for them twice.
7. Confirm there are no legal actions pending or in progress against the condo corporation.