With Square One condo prices on the rise, it’s no surprise that this in turn has sparked a debate over the efficient use of square footage within units. Over the past decade, we have seen bedroom sizes shrink, and secondary washrooms along with walk-in closets become mainstream. This transformation has Mississauga condo shoppers closely scrutinizing condo unit layouts, trying to decide how to get most for their money. Let’s examine some of the advantages of having a 2nd bath and a walk-in-closet.
A second bathroom establishes an automatic sense of luxury in a condo. The second washroom is usually accessed through the master bedroom suite, which creates a sense of additional privacy. Aside of the luxury aspect, an additional washroom really comes in handy when having guests over. Your personal bathroom belongings can be kept in the ensuite washroom and out of sight from the guests. Other residents take advantage of having two washrooms by assigning each of the bathrooms for exclusive use to different family members.
It is important to keep in mind that secondary bathrooms add monetary value to a condo unit. To illustrate: a 2 bedroom + 2 bathroom 800 square foot condo, could be worth in the ball park of $8,000-$15,000 more compared to a 2 bedroom + 1 bathroom 800 square foot condo. Thus, when purchasing a condo, a secondary washroom, although maybe not required at a present time, should always be taken into consideration.
Walk in closets have also become attractive to those seeking the condo lifestyle. A recent US based study found that 47 per cent of condo owners felt that a walk-in closet is a must have. From my own observations, I’ve noticed that female condo shoppers tend to put more “weight” on the walk in closets than their male counterparts.
All the downtown Mississauga condo builders have pretty much standardized walk in closets into most of the larger unit layouts. The closets are designed to maximize storage and organization of clothes and other tangible goods. Well layout closets should include a mirror and an independent light source within. Walk in closets have become sought over to the point where it is not uncommon to find people who have started turning their small condo bedrooms and dens into specious walk in storage rooms. Even IKEA has suggested how to make this dream for many a reality.
A question that I get often asked is– “What is a better choice for a condo layout, having one bathroom with a walk-in closet or having two bathrooms with no walk-in closet?”
My opinion is as follows: with smaller 1 bedroom units (sub 600-650 square feet), I prefer to go for the walk in closet layout as storage space is very scarce and often the closet space located by the suite entrance doors is limited. Also, with smaller 1 bedroom units the number of residents residing is usually set to one or two, and thus a secondary bathroom might not be considered an efficient use of condo square footage.
On the other hand, when 2 bedroom units are present, a second bathroom is more significant than having a walk in closet. Units that have two bedrooms, have a minimal of three regular sized closets (main entrance and both bedrooms).
Finally, it is important to remember that additional storage can be created through different methods than a walk in closet. This could mean buying an external free standing piece of furniture or renting an additional condo locker. However, if there is only one bathroom installed within a unit and the resident wants a secondary bathroom then his or her choices are limited, if any.
As a final thought, it comes down to personal preference, as well as practicality and what works best for the individual.
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