Red Flags When Buying A Condo

Thinking of buying a condo? Condos are the perfect option for several types of homeowners. Still, there tend to be more red flags for condo purchases than for other single-family homes. If you aren’t careful – you could lose some serious money on your condo purchase.

Let’s discuss some red flags when buying a condo that potential buyers should be aware of when looking for their perfect home. From hidden fees and overpriced units to surprise maintenance costs and small living spaces – these are all issues you’ll want to look out for if you’re in the market for a condo. Let’s take a closer look at what to watch out for during your search.

Researching The Property

It’s essential to research the condo you’re interested in before purchasing. Look at the property history, such as any repairs or renovations that have taken place over time. Investigate neighborhood amenities and nearby attractions within walking distance of the building. Finally, consider other expenses like condo fees which can vary greatly depending on what type of unit it is.

Lastly, think about resale value–what kind of return are you likely to see if you choose to sell? All this information should be considered when making your decision. Once you’ve thoroughly researched a property, it’s time to examine the financials.

Understanding The Financials

Did you know that the average American household spends up to 33% of its annual income on housing costs? When buying a condo, understanding the associated financials is essential so you don’t end up underwater. Here are the most important things to consider:

  • Condo / HOA Fees – Be aware of any monthly fees or assessments that come with owning a condo – these may include maintenance fees, insurance payments, and other expenses.

  • Mortgage Payments – Make sure your budget can handle mortgage payments before signing the purchase agreement. Also, consider if there are additional loan charges such as points, origination fees, and private mortgage insurance (PMI).

  • Property Taxes – Don’t forget about property taxes when calculating total ownership costs. They vary based on location and tax rate, so it’s important to research beforehand. Property taxes in vacation-oriented destinations can be much different from other nearby areas. 

  • Closing Costs & Down Payment – Closing costs typically amount to 2–5 percent of the home price. They should be factored into the overall cost equation. Additionally, determine how much money will need to be put forward for a down payment before making an

By considering all these factors, buyers can make informed decisions about their potential purchase and avoid costly surprises further down the line. Once the financials are squared away, it’s time for inspection.

Inspecting The Property

A comprehensive property inspection is essential when buying a condo. A formal inspection will help identify potential issues and determine whether they are within your budget to fix. An experienced inspector should be able to check the building for structural defects, plumbing and electrical systems, insulation, roofing, HVAC units, windows/doors, and any other areas that may need addressing. The cost of an inspection varies depending on the size of the unit being inspected but generally ranges from $250-$500.

The inspection report should detail all identified deficiencies plus any recommendations for repairs or renovations that might be required to bring the property up to code. It’s important to read through this report carefully as it could save you money in terms of necessary renovations or repairs post-purchase if there are unresolved problems with the condo.

Hiring a professional inspector is recommended for more than just first-time buyers. Even if you’re familiar with real estate law and construction techniques, these inspections are still beneficial. An inspector can provide valuable information about things such as energy efficiency, safety concerns, and potential repairs needed on the property. This knowledge can help inform decisions when negotiating prices and contracts between sellers and buyers. Having this information available beforehand can also prevent potential legal disputes down the road should something arise after the purchase has been finalized.

When done correctly, condo inspections provide peace of mind for both parties involved – ensuring everyone’s best interests are accounted for before signing final documents. Knowing what condition a unit is in ahead of time allows buyers to make more informed decisions about whether they want to proceed with negotiations or walk away from a bad deal altogether.

Knowing Your Rights as A Buyer

Knowing your buyer’s rights can protect you from any potential real estate laws during the transaction. It is essential to have legal advice when purchasing a condo, and understanding local real estate laws can give you an edge as a buyer. Additionally, there are many ways in which buyer protection exists, and being aware of them will ensure that all parties involved in the purchase are adequately protected.

Consulting with a lawyer or attorney specializing in real estate law before making any major decisions regarding the sale of a condo should be considered a priority. They will advise on what protections exist for buyers within your jurisdiction and how these apply during the process of buying a condominium unit. By doing so, buyers can make informed decisions regarding their condo purchases while knowing they have sufficient protection under relevant real estate laws.

Avoiding Red Flags When Buying a Condo

Overall, buying a condo can be a great investment. However, it’s important always to keep your eyes open for potential red flags that could lead to more significant problems down the road. A buyer should do their due diligence when researching the property and understand all the financials involved in the purchase before signing on the dotted line.

Inspecting the property yourself and hiring a professional inspector if necessary is also essential. With 65% of buyers making an offer on their dream home after only visiting once, it’s vital to take some extra time to ensure you are getting exactly what you pay for. If you consider these key points while purchasing a condo, you will have many years of enjoyment in your new home free of red flags and their costs.

If you’re looking for help buying a condo in Aurora, CO, look no further than The Storck Team. With their extensive knowledge of the local real estate market, they’re the perfect choice to guide you through the process. Contact The Storck Team now to get started on your condo purchase journey and make the most of your investment!


Tatyana Sturm-Storck

Tatyana and Aaron have over 36 years of combined experience in buying, selling, and investing in real estate. Between 2020 and 2022 they had 282 buy/sell transactions. Approximately 70% of those transactions were in Aurora, Centennial, and Parker.