Buying a condo is a great option when you want to live in an area that doesn't have a lot of single family houses, you have less money to spend on your own home, and you require less space. However, before you jump into this decision, there are some things to consider first. As you begin looking at condos you are interested in, make sure you look for the following things.
The Included Amenities
The first thing you should be looking at when buying a condo is exactly what amenities it comes with. You will already know the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the size of the kitchen, and where in the complex it is located. However, you should also look for other things that might be included, such as whether or not you have a garage or storage space on site, how many parking spaces you get, and whether there are washer and dryer hook-ups in the condo itself or the garage. Since condos are a little different than single family residences, the amenities and what is included when buying a condo is really important.
HOA Rules and Restrictions
Many condo buildings have a homeowner's association (HOA), which will have their own rules, regulations, and restrictions. The HOA might have strict rules about not having pets or only allowing a certain number of pets in your condo, while others have rules about whether or not you can barbecue on your patio, what plants and furniture you can keep on the patio or balcony, and what improvements you can make inside. Some HOAs give you full reign for upgrading the plumbing fixtures, painting, and flooring in the condo, while others are a little stricter about how you can make upgrades. If you think you want to rent out the condo in the future, make sure the HOA allows this.
Types of Financing Allowed
One thing you might not have considered is that only certain types of home loans and financing are allowed by condo associations. Some of these communities won't allow a Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loan for example. This type of home loan allows you to be approved with more lenient requirements, such as having a lower required credit score and a less down payment required. If the only way you can buy a condo is by having an FHA loan, that is a good place to start when looking for condos. If you are going through a real estate agent to find condos for sale, let them know about your financing, and they will find a complex that will work with you.