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Condos Provide Unique Homeownership Opportunities
By Phillip B. Burum
America celebrates National Homeownership month in June in honor of the biggest and best investment most Americans will make in their lifetime. Our goal, during this celebratory period, is to help make today’s prospective homebuyers the best-informed in history while America’s builders strive to provide homes for the widest range of Americans possible. And today, more than ever before, one of the best opportunities for homeownership is the condominium.
Most, at least initially, consider purchasing a condominium as purely an economic decision but today builders are finding buyers in nearly every demographic profile from young people entering the housing market for the first time to retirees and others who seek the benefits of homeownership and the convenience and affordability of multi-family living. Such a broad market appeal has led builders to developing more and more multi-family units each year.
Contributing to the appeal of condos as the preferred choice of a growing number of homebuyers are the number of major advancements in modern condo design. From sound attenuation achieved by enhanced insulation techniques to smart building design, condo builders strive to provide a single-family home experience within a multi-family home.
In addition to technological advancements in construction practices, condominium communities typically offer a wide range of activities or services that are not likely found in traditional neighborhoods. The services, whether including a full concierge or simply a central gathering space for the homeowners in the neighborhood, are a major part of the appeal of condo living today.
If you are ready to buy your first home, take some time to visit one of the many new multi-family communities under development today. Before leaving home, however, make a list of the items that are important to you or your family. The size of the home, room count, and the cost of the home should be at the top of the checklist. Following immediately behind, however, should be community amenities. Today’s condo communities are often planned for a specific demographic or lifestyle and will feature value-added facilities and services targeted to attract prospective buyers in that buyer category. Shop for a home in a community that was designed to fit your lifestyle and interests.
Not all homeowners are looking for pickle ball or a pool and America’s builders recognized that, to appeal to the largest potential buyer pool, it is also necessary to design communities with fewer or no amenities. Amenities cost money and those costs are passed onto the buyer as part of the sales price of the home, but they also carry long term costs for upkeep and potential replacement. It is important to contemplate your use of these amenities as part of your buying decision. If you don’t swim or require a major clubhouse for gaming purposes, look at ‘lock and leave’ options. These communities are designed for the low maintenance buyer, whether it is an empty nester that is downsizing or a millennial that is simply looking for a place to hang their clothes, get some sleep and take a shower; some buyers believe less is more.
Regardless of where you fall on the amenities needs scale, there is likely an option for you.
There is no better day to buy a home than today. Interest rates continue to hover at historical lows and builders continue to introduce new and varied home options. If you are renting and believe you are priced out of the market because you have had your eye on that 4,000 square foot dream home in the hills of Rancho Cucamonga, refocus your vision and your priorities and look at opportunities to own a condo. Contributing to your landlord’s retirement is not your responsibility, it’s time to start investing in your future.
The Building Industry Association (BIA) Baldy View Chapter seeks to advance the opportunity to attain the American Dream of homeownership. For more information on homebuying, remodeling, or just enjoying your home, visit our www.biabuild.com website and have a great Father’s Day.