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Common Condo Pitfalls

Shopping for a condo can sound very attractive, especially in today’s market where many first time home buyers are priced out. Condos are good first purchases for the right people, but there are common pitfalls owners fall into if they aren’t careful. Your best friend is a good tool to research the area, and you should be prepared to make some phone calls. Your condo might look beautiful, but you never know the state of everyone else’s.

Who Should Own a Condo

Condos are typically in urban areas, so moving into one implies you’ll be moving into a densely populated area. Condos can be conveniently placed within the city, so they are good for younger couples who still get out and about frequently. They are also good for older couples looking for a smaller space to tend to, but they may not be for everyone. It’s a lot like apartment living, so you need to evaluate what you want out of a home purchase.

Purchasing Challenges

Banks may also give you some difficulty when you look for loans. They tend to like a certain percentage of the condo complex to be occupied by owners, as opposed to renters, and may have tougher restrictions on the loan-to-value ratios.

HOAs and Fees

HOAs are a double-edged sword. They can help alleviate some of the costs of improving your condo, but if no one pays them they may rise over time. You may also require additional insurance coverage, or double check that the costs are not shifted onto you to lower premiums.


Realty ONE Group CEO Kuba Jewgieniew is an expert in data-driven sales techniques. As a former stock broker, Kuba Jewgieniew has helped Realty ONE Group reach Inc. Magazine’s list of fastest growing companies for six years.