Post # 1
OK, Bees, FH & I need help! We’re condo hunting, and we think we found some beautiful condos, but I’m struggling with whether or not the drawbacks are worth it. To the Hive for second opinions!
PROS:+ good neighbourhood (heart of downtown, but in one of the less “run-down”/high-crime areas; just off a main street, but far enough into a residential neighbourhood so it’s not too noisy; nearby good eats/grocery/etc.)+ we can get a 6th or 5th floor condo (out of 6 floors) within our budget (we want to be as high as possible)+ BEAUTIFUL interiors (ceramic floors; nice cabinets; built-in electric range, oven, dishwasher & fridge)+ den/2nd bdrm w/sliding doors onto living/dining room (allows for expansion into that area as well for entertaining)+ the coolest showers I have ever seen (LED-lit w/spa-inspired jets out from the wall & ceiling)+ iPod docks pre-installed in walls w/built-in speakers in ceilings+ in-suite video monitoring of main entrance & buzz system+ keyless (fob) entry (plus doorknob lock)+ yoga studio/exercise room on top floor+ rooftop terrace accessible for everyone in building+ titled parking stall included in price+ brand new build (never been owned before)+ low condo fees
CONS:- tiny (750ish square feet; now, FH & I are cozy people, so this isn’t a HUGE problem, but it’s something to take into consideration)- top end of our budget (which is still affordable; we designed our budget so that even the top end won’t leave us mortgage-poor)- parking is partially-covered, but NOT underground (we live in Canada, where it snows) & NOT video-monitored- NO guest parking (just street parking; all metred or 2-hr limited)- since it’s a new build, we’d have to pay GST (5% of the price) on the unit- views aren’t GREAT (not too bad, though; just not much green; lots of rooftops, streets, & walls from neighbouring buildings)- galley-style kitchens (not open-concept)- small appliances in kitchen (stove/oven/dishwasher/fridge/freezer)
My biggest hang-ups are the parking, and the kitchens (size of appliances & galley-style). I know that obviously it just comes down to personal preference, but what do you think, Bees? Would you buy?
ETA: website for condos: http://www.fifteencondos.com
Post # 3
@Jenniphyr: I think my deal breaker for me would be the size. DH and I went through that last year, we looked at a beautiful brand new space, but it was smaller than the teeny house we were living in before! We just knew it wouldn’t work. We ended up buying a townhouse slightly bigger than our old house, and I don’t know how we lived with each other before. I love DH and I’d say we are “cozy” people as well, but I just need my space.
Post # 4
I don’t think you should compromise. Keep looking until you find exactly what you want. If there’s a “It’s great….but” you should keep looking. Fiance and I just bought our first home together and we looked for almost a year but i’m so glad we didn’t settle on those “almost perfect” properties, because now we actually found the perfect home for us, no “buts”.
Post # 5
These condos are really nice but I don’t think I would go for it. As others have said, you’re compromising and if you wait a little longer for the right place, you won’t have to compromise on the things you want. I don’t know if you have plans for kids, but it doesn’t seem kid friendly to me.
Post # 6
I would not, mainly because it sounds like it would be difficult to re-sell (because of size, kitchen size, parking, condo fees). Not sure what your long-term plans are, but the last thing I’d want is to be stuck owning a condo that I can’t get rid of.
Post # 7
I loooovee it. It’s really similar to mine and FI’s to be honest. We have the opposite issue- ours is TOO big and we regret it. 1600 sq ft is enormous- 750 would be a dream come true. It’s in Edmonton… you won’t have an issue re-selling it.
Post # 8
as soon as I saw 750 sq ft I wouldn’t BUY the condo…I would rent something that size. Just my opinion.
Post # 9
If you ever want to start a family or you feel you need more elbow room a few years down the road, I wouldn’t buy. I know you said the galley style kitchen isn’t your flavor and I totally hear you on that. But at 750 sq/ft the chances of you finding a place that has an open concept kitchen is pretty slim unless you go a bit larger or luck out (I know they exist). Also, I would want people to eventually be able to visit us. Guest parking was one of those things we needed at the place we bought. I would hate to have peole constantly running down to check their meters or hike from their car to the house. That being said, the place is beautiful. Seriously. Absolutely gorgeous. So I see your struggle. I don’t know what is available and what the market is like where you are but I would personally keep looking, even though it’s painful. But if this is the best of the best in your market I would consider buying if it makes you happy.
Post # 10
I do think you have to compromise when buying. but in this situation I think the cons outweigh the pros
Post # 11
I lived in a 650 sq ft house for 15 years. Creativity is the key – wall shelving and storage are essential. It didn’t bother me a bit. For many years, homes usually had less than 1000 sq ft. and people raised families in them and everything. I wouldn’t think the video surveillance thing would be a big deal unless you are in a high crime area.
Post # 12
I looked at the website, very attractive place. 750 for 2 beds is tiny though. The galley style kitchen is boring. Parking seems like a bust too. I would keep looking. I think you if you have to think about it this much, its not the one.
Post # 13
I don’t think I could compromise on the size, along with the parking issues.
Post # 14
I should clarify…renting is a DEFINITE NO for us. We both think it’s throwing money away & would rather put that equal amount into mortgage payments to build equity. So renting is not an option; we’re strictly looking to buy.
Post # 15
Actually, we’ve seen other places that small, and ALL the new builds (and most of the renovated older options) have open-concept kitchens in order to make the most of the space.
Post # 16
Way too small & the parking issue would be a deal breaker for me as well. I say keep looking.