Condos in the Square One area are valued at and around $600 per square foot. And given that they can rise or fall up to 10% condo owners are keen to maximize their investment. Of course, the traditional methods are obvious things that upgrade the value of your Updated kitchens and baths or an unobstructed view. However, there are small and surprising building details that can affect the value of your unit. Some things will lead you to say “of course!” while others you can only know from observing the building or living there.
These are the surprising things that affect Condo Value:
The number of Visitor Parking spaces can really affect the quality of life for residents. Fewer condominium developments have even enough parking spaces for the residents let alone spare spots for visitors. This can really frustrate owners when they are having a party, hosting a dinner party or even just a games night with friends. Consider the building’s location, the demographics of the building, the availability of street parking as well as your own habits. Are you likely to have a super bowl party? Is everyone else also likely to? That could be an issue come the start of February. The older and younger the demographics of the building sway the more likely visitors will be coming around. While a building with young professionals or families is more likely to be the ones headed out to visit others.
Elevator shutdowns are always frustrating. However, when a 35 storey building has only three elevators and one or two are frequently broken down residents can take up to 30min to get to and from their unit during peak times. Especially concerning to your unit’s value is when your prospective buyers and their realtors visit they get discouraged and can reject your unit because of it. It is hard to know before moving in how often the elevators break down but there are some factors you can keep in mind. The age of the building and therefore the elevators is a good starting point. Also, if there is a disproportionate number of units to elevators. An architectural rule of thumb for multi-family buildings is one elevator for every 60-90 units.
Too Many Rental Units
Square One Condos are a great opportunity for investors. They have shown great returns and been popular for a number of years. This leads to a high number of rental units in the area’s buildings. Our team has observed though that when too many units in the building are rented out, say 50%, the building’s wear and tear show. This can lead to property values dropping. Often with renters and absentee homeowners, the pride of ownership is lost and less care is taken of the common areas and facilities. Remember, a condo corporation is only as good as the members. Absent owners can skew the Board of Director’s process and your unit can be affected.
Rude or Difficult Staff
It is amazing what a little, kind gesture can do to the general feeling within a condo building. If there are lax security measures or even overworked staff unit values can be affected. Visitors and prospective buyers will walk away from the building with a sour taste in their mouths if they have a negative experience. Property Management, Concierge and Security can forget that their salaries get paid by the residents of the building and can let their busy and difficult positions affect their attitudes while executing their duties. If you notice this happening in your building bring it up to the Board of Directors and keep in mind it could affect your future sale.
Hidden Lockbox Location
Lockboxes are an awkward part of selling your condo. They make the process simultaneously easier and more aggravating. Some Square One condos require lockboxes to be in strange or simply inconvenient places. Such as outside, or by the garbage room. During Canadian winters this can present problems as lockboxes can freeze and interested buyers might have a hard (or stinky) time seeing your condo! Each building’s Property Management decides where the lockboxes should be located. By expressing to them how it’s placement can affect the sales process, they may move the location. But at the core of it is that your sale is in danger if a buyer has to wait around while their agent hunts for the lockbox. Take note when you are buying where the lock boxes are kept while you are shopping for your new Square One Condo.
When shopping for a condo, pay attention to the above elements. One day when you sell your unit, someone else might be looking for these things too and their opinion might be different than yours. These are the aspects of your purchase you can not change easily and can really affect the value of your condo unit, surprising though they are.
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