Condo sales were up in 2015, with many buyers seeking luxury in the heart of a metropolitan area. But beyond location, there are many factors to consider when looking for the perfect condo. Here are six things to keep in mind while on the lookout for your next home.
Your condo may be a great place to live, but they won’t always come with a great place to park. Sometimes you’ll be required to either purchase a space, or pay a monthly fee for usage of a space. Ideally, any parking associated with your condo will be covered (or underground) and a short distance from your building.
Fun fact: in New York City, an underground parking spot at 42 Crosby Street will run you $1 million. That’s more than four times the national median price for a home.
Large Closets/Storage in Condos
Having a walk-in closet is the dream for many homeowners, but you don’t have to give up on the idea when it comes to condominium living. Closets aren’t just a dark room for tucking things away. The trend is for closets to be a room that it’s actually a pleasure to spend some time in.
If you don’t want to fill up your closet space with holiday decorations, tools, bikes and anything else your visitors might trip over, check to see if your condo has storage spaces available to rent. They’re a great way to keep your living space neat without getting rid of some essential items.
Room for Guests
If you’re moving from a house to a condo, part of the appeal might be downsizing. But what if your children want to visit, or a friend is visiting town?
An extra bedroom or two gives you options for entertaining, as well as space for an exercise or game room. A sleeper sofa or futon allows the space to easily transition from its everyday usage into a temporary sleeping quarters for guests.
Pool and Fitness Center
When the weather is bad, it can be tough to get motivated to drive to the gym. Condominiums are increasingly putting a focus on workout rooms that rival many gyms, with the convenience of never having to set foot outside.
For an after workout cool down, many condos feature secure or indoor swimming pools. In addition to exercise, a pool is also a great option for entertaining guests. Who wouldn’t enjoy the opportunity to host the occasional pool party?
There’s nothing like some extra security to help you sleep easier at night. A good condominium should only be accessible to residents via an external key/keypad system.
Some buildings also have someone working the door or front desk. While this may seem nice, it’s an added expense that will be reflected in building association fees. There are virtual doorman and concierge programs that are available for a fraction of the cost of on-site staff.
Space and layout are the name of the game when it comes kitchens in a condominium. The kitchen is an important location for entertaining, so an open area with a good flow to other rooms helps create a luxurious feel.
Don’t get too wrapped up in the appliances that come with a condo. They may be flashy, but are they disguising the fact that the kitchen is cramped or poorly laid out? You can always put new, stainless steel appliances (and protect them, too!) and granite counter tops into an existing space, but a poorly-designed kitchen is harder to work with.
You can find most of the above options at almost any condominium. But if you want to go super luxurious, there are a lot more options out there. For instance, you can find condos with private wine cellars, as well as “staff suites,” in case you have you want to provide living space for your employees. Or maybe you want on-site groomers for your dogs, or a bowling alley in your building. You can even find a place to live with its own screening rooms for movies, or state-of-the-art virtual reality set-ups.