From A Woman's Perspective: World Logic Day

Friday Jan 12th, 2024


Good morning, Marilyn.

I’m not sure whether you and your listeners know, but everything we have developed at SMART Realty Solutions is designed to address the real-life challenges our clients face. 

We’ve spoken lately about the nearly-universal need to declutter prior to downsizing. Our program, “The Decluttering Battle Plan,” is practical advice that anyone can apply to start living a lighter, brighter life in preparation for a move one day.

Similarly, our unique service of in-person and virtual condo market tours was developed by an objection I hear regularly from would-be downsizers. In fact, I heard this objection in a conversation just this past week. My lovely potential client admitted, “I know, Sharon, that it’s time for me to move, but I just don’t like the idea of living in one of those condos.” As I questioned them a bit further, I realized that they were talking about just one kind of condo: the high-density, high-rise “box in the sky” type. 

What many of my clients might not know is that “condo” refers to a type of ownership, not a type of dwelling. There are condo apartments, yes, but there are also condo townhouses, condo semis, and even condo detached residences. What they all have in common is that owners pay a proportionate share of the costs of running and maintaining the overall development. 

And even condo apartments are not all tiny boxes in the sky. Far from it! There are high-rise, mid-rise and low-rise condos. They can range in size from under 500 square feet to two or three thousand square feet, and in price from under $400,000 to…well,... the sky’s the limit! (See what I did there?) There is literally a condo to fit every need, want, size and budget. You just need an agent who knows where to find them. 

Another common objection I hear about condos from my long-term homeowners is that maintenance fees are sky-high. This is another misconception. Monthly maintenance fees also vary wildly based on a number of factors such as age of building, amenities and utilities included and the such. I know spending money every month just to live in a place really sticks in the craw of people who aren’t used to doing so, especially if they are mortgage-free. But let me challenge that thinking somewhat. 

  1. All homeowners are already currently paying maintenance fees, they just don’t think of them that way. I recently had to replace both my roof and my windows, and I am telling you that was tens of thousands of dollars! Ouch! When you add in snow removal, lawn maintenance, and regular repairs, owning a home is expensive. We are just not in the habit of setting aside a certain amount of money every month toward those future expenses. We take the hit financially or worse, postpone repairs and defer maintenance.
  2. Think of maintenance fees as an “opportunity cost.” You have the opportunity to live free from all exterior maintenance, enjoy building amenities like fitness centers, concierge and security services, and the freedom to turn the key and travel without worrying about getting someone to check on your house every couple of days.

Buying a condo is just one of the property options to downsizing seniors, but it is among the most popular. And for good reason! Condo living provides safe, convenient, and affordable living in a wide array of building options.

If you are interested in learning more about condo living, I would encourage you to reach out and ask for your copy of my booklet, “Condo Considerations.” Like everything at SMART Realty Solutions, it’s free of cost or obligation. 

And if you really want to get a good overview of what’s available in condo properties, I encourage you to attend this week’s Wednesday Webinar, our virtual condo market tour of real-life listings currently for sale in Richmond Hill and Thornhill. No matter what part of the GTA you’re interested in, I guarantee you you’ll learn a ton about the condo market! Who knows, you might finally fall in love with all that condos as a property and lifestyle option can offer!

Call me at 416-460-5636 to request the “Condo Considerations” booklet, or to register for our “Condo Market Tour” on Wednesday. You can also visit our website, and register there. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

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