3 Things to Know Before Buying a Condo
Buying a condominium may be a fun investment or a great first-time opportunity but there are some things to be aware of, especially if you’ve never owned real estate before. Here in Panama City Beach Florida we have a lot of investors that consider purchasing a condominium for a second home or vacation rental. Condominiums also make great first-time options since they can ease homeowners into the responsibilities of home ownership. Homeowners are not responsible for the entire property which is the interior portion of the unit.
#1 – Often times, condominiums can be less expensive than a single-family house. Especially in Panama City Beach, some of the beautiful condominiums right on the water could actually be cheaper than some of the large homes and estates. Of course, it all depends on what your condominium Association provides and what the amenities are per building. The more amenities such as swimming pools, fitness centers, concierge or valet services, can add hundreds of dollars on to the monthly, quarterly or annual homeowners dues. This is not something that a typical house owner would have to worry about although, most of the homes around Panama City Beach already have swimming pools so homeowners would be responsible for the maintenance and care of that pool.
#2 – There are rules. This could be a good thing and a bad thing when it comes to a condominium purchase. There are rules and regulations that homeowners must abide by set forth in the CC&Rs, which stands for covenants, conditions and rules or restrictions. This will state whether or not a condo owner is allowed to have pets, satellite dishes, or other rules and restrictions as to noise levels and curfews. Some homeowners appreciate these rules so that the noise level is kept to a minimum while others prefer not to have the restrictions and prefer to own a house.
#3 – How much the Association has in reserves. Everything might be going along fine until the entire complex needs a new roof or new siding, then all of a sudden all of the unit owners are slapped with a $10,000 special assessment fee. If there are not enough funds in the reserve account to cover large expenses or replacements, those expenses will be put on the unit owners. If you cannot afford to pay these your unit may have a lien taken out against it and you could lose your home. It’s best to understand all of the rules when it comes to reserves and special assessments before finalizing documents on your condo.
For more information on purchasing a condominium in Panama City Beach feel free to call us at any time.