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Condo popularity is growing in Canada

According to an Ipsos Reid poll conducted within the past year for TD Bank, more and more urban Canadian homebuyers are choosing Condominiums as their place of residence.  The survey polled prospective homebuyers between 25 and 59 years of age now living in Canada’s major cities -- Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Calgary and Ottawa – and found that 35% of those polled in these top cities are likely to consider purchasing a condominium as their primary residence.

With more than a third of all survey respondents willing to consider buying a condominium, the group represents people from all walks of life.  First time homebuyers and young professionals are attracted to condominiums, including a growing segment of the home buying public – single, professional females.  Older couples who are empty nesters or are approaching retirement and want the flexibility to travel extensively are also prime candidates for the condo market.

When asked their reasons for considering a condominium purchase, the Canadians who were polled gave the following reasons:

1.      "condos are easier to maintain" (69%)
2.      "affordability" (57%)
3.      attracted to the "condo lifestyle" (45%)
Perhaps some of the same reasons appeal to you, either as a homebuyer for your own residence, or for a vacation home or income property.  If so, then why not talk to the ThinkTorontoHomes.com Team to find out more?  There’s no obligation to you, and it just may be the most important call you’ll make this year.  It could be that, like many other Canadians, you’ll find that the condominium lifestyle is the answer to all your home-buying questions.   
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2007 at 09:38AM by Registered CommenterElaine | Comments2 Comments | References1 Reference

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Reader Comments (2)

What I find interesting with respect to the Ipsos Reid poll conducted for TD is that most of those polled were obviously not condominium unit Owners. The costs of owning and maintaining a condominium unit is not by necessity lower than those of a detached single family residence.Costs are contigent upon several factors;

1. The competence and commitment of those serving on the condominium Corporation's Board of Directors of the condominium Corporation.

2. The competence and honesty of the property manager and/or the property management company.

3. The reserve Fund Study, Board's funding plan for the reserve fund.

4. Age of the building.

What potential condominium unit Owners may not be aware of, is the simple fact that there is no enforcement of the Condominijum Act by the Government or any other agency. Accountability to unit Owners from the Board of Director can cost a unit Owner tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of dollars because of the need to hire "condominium lawyers" to arbitrate or litigate against the Corporation. There is no other means by which a unit Owner can make the Board follow the laws and govern your investment competently. "CAVEAT EMPTOR"
July 2, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterYvon Piche
While I'll have to agree with Yvon that the competence of the board of directors and management play an important role in the value and quality of living of a condo investment, I think the picture that was painted is a little "glummer" than it should be...

1) Firstly, to address the comment that "The costs of owning and maintaining a condominium unit is not by necessity lower than those of a detached single family residence." People always seem to be increasingly concerned about the maintenance fee costs and rightfully so... one of the things I think that really hits people is that maintenance fees are a monthly cost whereas items in a freehold residence are more like large lump sums once in awhile (i.e. changing roofs, fixing windows, repairing foundations, etc.). When factoring in that utlities are sometimes included in condo fees and take up the largest proportionate share of the cost, if you were to break down the cost of maintenance over the long run for a freehold and for a condo, you'd find they'd be pretty on par give or take, but if it's higher for a condo, is it unjustified? Afterall, you are partially paying for the lifestyle, the convenience, the amenities/perks, the cleanliness, and the time that you save from doing much of the upkeep items that you would have to do at a freehold residence. All those things cost money and the people required to do them cost money too.


2) The people who sit on the Board of Directors of the Condominium Corporation are unit owners as well (tenants are generally not permitted to hold spots on the board) so they typically have a vested interest in the complex. Given that, I'm sure it's not in their best interest to "screw everyone over" because they will, in essence, be "screwing" themselves as well. Another thing to point out is that the Board of Directors are elected by the unit owners (who actually vote) and anyone who owns a unit has the opportunity to be on the board... if you dont' like how things are run in your building, then make sure to vote during election time, attend the general meetings, join the board, voice your opinions and make a difference!

2) CAVEAT EMPTOR... if you purchase the suite new from a developer or on the resale side, you usually get a big package that includes the declaration for the condo if it's new or a status certificate and accompanying documents if it's a resale. The documents usually include all the bylaws, budget statements, financials, meeting minutes, etc. for the condo which are all very important elements to consider in a condo purchase. All the documents should be taken to a lawyer for review before proceeding with a sale so in that sense, it is Caveat Emptor - buyer beware, but you do have the option to back out if you're not pleased. I will put in a note that it is a lot more risky to buy new from a developer because you are essentially buying into a new condo corporation (think of it as a new business startup that has no money in the reserve, new management, new board of directors, etc.)... that's all a part of buying new though right?

Hope that helps!

Jo
July 5, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterJoanna Duong

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