Downsizing Your Home – Moving To a Condo

Choosing Your Home or CondoA condominium can be a great choice if you are considering downsizing your home. There are special rules that apply to condos, though, so be sure you know exactly what they are before you buy your condo. A good real estate agent should be able to show you the rules before you get too deep in your property search.

Pay Attention to the Details in Your Home Search

One of the real benefits of living in a condo is that upkeep and maintenance are taken care of by the property management or condo association. Residents in the complex pay monthly fees for these costs, a portion of which is placed into a savings account for future repairs.

Be sure to check the financial records of the condo association to ensure that they are putting some of the monthly fees into savings for big repairs like a roof replacement. This is especially important in an older complex, where rules may be a bit more lax. You’ll also want to review the complex’s insurance policy, too. Actual buildings and exterior walls are usually covered, but you’ll want to know if the belongings in your condo are, too, or if you need an additional policy.

Find out what exterior maintenance jobs are covered by your condo association and if there are rules about exterior decorations. Some places are very strict, and you don’t want an unhappy surprise if you love to decorate for holidays. Read all community rules very carefully.

Two things that can make or break living in your condo are the manager (if applicable) and the homeowners association (HOA). A professional, on-site manager is a must in a large condo complex. You want to be sure that repairs will be done quickly and well and you will also want to do a little digging if it’s a new development. Find out and research the developer. Talk to potential neighbors about the HOA, too. It should be a resource for keeping the complex running smoothly. If not, move on.

If you do your research and find a quality condo complex, you’ll be sure to enjoy your home for as long as you choose to live in it.

Aaron Zapata is the broker owner of Zapata Realty, Inc. located in Yorba Linda, CA. He has been a licensed broker for over a decade and has been working in the real estate industry for over 16 years.

Aaron began his career as a part-time telemarketer for a top producing Real Estate broker-owner in Whittier. Within a few years he was running the entire company and helped grow the company by hiring and training over 200 agents and overseeing the escrow, mortgage, and property management divisions.

Aaron holds a degree in Biblical and Theological studies from Biola University and a Masters in Business from Cal State Fullerton. He has been quoted by the Los Angeles Times, Orange County Register and the Associated Press and is an author and speaker. He is also maintains designations and memberships with nearly a dozen organizations aimed at raising the standards and ethics in the real estate industry. Although ranked in the top 1% nationwide, he gives each client his focused attention with the simple purpose of doing what is best for them. Nearly all of his business comes from referrals from his satisfied clients.

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