Condominiums can be a great investment provided you are careful in your initial purchase. In over 20 years as a Real Estate agent, I have seen Condo investments that were awesome and others that were awful. Awareness through education in your initial purchase decision makes all the difference.
It is still true that location is number one in Real Estate and ignoring this fact is unwise. Condos in good areas close to or in the city, have many advantages and even potential future financial rewards through renting. Negatives that cause a lower initial sales price will probably always be there so think ahead to the day you may want to sell your unit
Condos are governed by legal documents. Be sure you review ALL of them before you close on a Condo purchase. Also ask to see the last few Association meeting minutes. They will give you an idea of the issues and problems the Association may be facing.
Future Financial concerns
Pay special attention to the HOA dues and be aware they can go up. The more amenities a complex has, the more possibility for assessments and rising HOA fees. This is especially true if there are not many residents. When you review all of the Condo documents you will have an idea of the financial position of the Association.
Similar and Different from Apartment Living
Many Condos are reminiscent of apartment living. There may be common walls and residents next to, above or below your unit. Keep all this in mind as you have no quarantine who your neighbors will be in the future.
With a Condo you will have a tax write off of mortgage interest but the HOA dues can not be written off unless you rent your Condo.
Be aware that a Condo is a form of ownership not an architectural style. There are detached Condos. In condos there are often common areas owned equally by all home owners in the complex or subdivision. This also means all are responsible for the expenses and maintenance of the common areas.
Attached Condos are an excellent alternative when you do not want the maintenance of yards. In general Condos are also less expensive and a good way to get into the Real Estate market. It is also advantageous to own attached Condos if you travel a lot since most of or all the yard work may be taken care of by your HOA.
One often overlooked essential in buying property is to check out the activity in and around the buildings and neighborhood. Drive by on Saturday night and several other times. Do not be shy about speaking with several residents. Most people are all too happy to brag or complain about advantages and disadvantages with their unit or neighborhood.
Condominiums can be an excellent investment. Do your homework. Working with a Real Estate agent with experience selling in the complex or neighborhood in which you are interested, is helpful. Speak to friends who have purchased Condos and learn from their mistakes.