Are you looking for a condo or loft?
You’ve come to the right place!
Here we’ve broken down each building by area so it makes for an easy way to find all the listings currently for sale in the building and area you want.
Click on one of the tiles below to get started.
Some of our more popular loft choices include:
Hudson Lofts – 535 1oth Avenue SW
Imperial Lofts – 220 11th Avenue SE
Lewis Lofts – 240 11th Avenue SW
Manhattan Lofts – 1117 1st Street SW
Orange Lofts – 535 8th Avenue SE
West 17th Lofts – Aspen Meadows Hill SW
Many people get confused with the term condo, or condominium. Most people believe it refers to a type of product, like a high rise single level unit as opposed to a house or a town home. This is simply not the case. The term condo/condominium refers to a style of living, not a type of product.
Did you know…
There are some acreages just outside of the city on 1,2, 3, and 4 acres of land, with large 2500 square foot + homes that are considered to be condominiums! It’s true. They are small acreage communities that pool funds together to maintain the area and certain aspects of the homes (like the shingles) to keep a uniform and exclusive look to their community. Each owner has to adhere to strict architectural controls, follow the governing bylaws set out by the board, and pay their monthly condominium contributions to maintain the upkeep of the community.
Further to this, some townhouses are condominiums while others are not. This is a very important distinction you should be aware of when making a decision to purchase a property. In some communities in Calgary, you can literally find the same floor plan, in the same community, one is a condo townhouse and one is an attached duplex with no condo fee.
So what is a condo, exactly?
When you buy a condo, you’re buying a lifestyle rather than a type of property. You’re agreeing to live by a set of rules and regulations, share common space, and help pay for building and other maintenance issues in the form of monthly condominium fees or by a special assessment should there not be enough money in the reserve fund to cover such an expense.
A great resource to check out is the condo law for Albertan’s website. This site breaks down all the ownership terms, responsibilities of owners and boards, as well as some other general information from a legal perspective.
Who should buy a condo?
Condominium ownership isn’t for everyone, but it is a great fit for many people. If you aren’t a fan of yard maintenance or home maintenance a condo may be a good option. If you travel a lot for work or pleasure, you may also find condominium ownership to be a great lifestyle choice that affords you the ability to “lock and leave” at any time.
Many condo’s offer amenities such as pools, hot tubs, & steam rooms/saunas. Some have full gyms, movie theaters, pool tables, library’s, guest suites, and board rooms that are for exclusive use to all owners. Other buildings have full 24 hour concierge and in house security while some buildings may have none of these features. Condominiums that are amenity rich will come at a higher monthly condo fee while the complex’s that have little to no amenities will likely have lower fees. What do you want in a building or complex?
As a first time home buyer a condo may be a good option. This gets you into the market and in a position of paying the principal down on a mortgage instead of paying rent to a landlord – all while enjoying the benefit of equity appreciation. Often a condo purchase can be more affordable than rent.
Another group that often benefits from the condo lifestyle are those going into the later stages of life. Age restricted buildings can offer a lifestyle perfectly suited to buyers looking for companionship with like-minded peers in a complex that offers activities and amenities suited to a specific age group. Some of these complex’s are also classified as senior assisted living facilities, which have built in alarm systems in units, on site staff, and other amenities which can be of extreme value for those that may not be as mobile or need the extra safety in case of a fall or emergency.
Condominium living may not be a good fit:
- If you are a pet owner as many condo complex’s have strict rules and regulations around pets. Some don’t allow pets of any kind, while others restrict the type, breed, or weight of the pet allowed.
- If you do not want to adhere to a specific set of rules or regulations. These can include special noise restrictions, types of materials or renovations you are allowed or not allowed in your unit, exterior look and style – everything is typically expected to be uniform and you may not be allowed to have different colours, window coverings, hang Christmas lights or other decorative items.
- If you want to buy the property as an investment and rent it out. Some corporations have rules around rentals. Short term rentals and using your property as an Airbnb for example, may be strictly prohibited. You will need to read through all the bylaws, rules and regulations carefully if this is your plan.
- If you have kids, or are planning on having kids. One of the restrictions you may run into is an age restriction. Some complex’s have rules around the age an occupant must be. Some have 18+ policies while others have 50+ policies in place. This may even be a factor if you are a grandparent and plan on having grandchildren stay with you for extended periods of time.
You’ve decided to buy a condo, what should you consider?
1. Your Choice of Representation Matters:
Not all condos are alike, many have different restrictions in place or specific sets of rules and regulations that may not be common. Some have strong reserve funds and good budgets, while others may not.
Similarly, not all Realtors are alike. Some Realtors are familiar with condominium purchase and sale agreements, what to look for and what to look out for, while others are not. Choosing a Realtor that is a C.C.S. (Certified Condominium Specialist by the Calgary Real Estate Board, C.R.E.B) should be high on your priority list. Having this designation means a Realtor has gone through a course specific to condominium sales and ownership that is above and beyond that of getting their real estate licence.
Interesting fact: Mike Star and all the associates on the Mike Star real estate team are designated by the Calgary Real Estate Board as C.C.S. members!
2. Condo Document Review:
A condo document review takes some of the guesswork out of buying a condo. There are many condominium document review companies in Calgary that specialize in providing a professional and comprehensive summary about the condominium you are planning to purchase. Hiring a third party document review company to ensure the documents are all in order, read thoroughly and understood is important. This will help simplify the process for you and highlight any areas of serious concern.
When buying a condo there are certain questions you should be asking before finalizing your decision as there are many little things that can make a big difference to your future investment’s appreciation and/or resale value.
- What is the development’s history?
- Are there any persistent problems with post tension cables?
- Are there any plumbing issues? (This is especially important when looking at older complexes that use hot water as a heating source)
- If buying from a developer, what is their reputation? What work remains to be completed on the condominium development? Does the purchase contract specify a completion date with details and specifications?
- Is there an operating surplus or deficit?
- What is the current financial status of the corporation?
- Do all the unit owners own the recreational facility as part of the common property, or does the condominium corporation lease them?
- Are there restrictions on the unit owner? (These can include restrictions on age, pets, home business, use of a satellite dish, installation of a hot tub)
- Are there any extra parking stalls for owners?
- What about guest parking, or motor home parking areas?
- Is there secured bike storage on site? (Some complexes require you to store your bike in your unit or on your balcony)
- Are the parking areas owned by the unit owners? If leased, can the owner of the land increase the lease costs?
These, along with many other questions can greatly affect your purchase. A professional review company will compile all this information in a way that is easy to read and understand. The company you choose to hire for the review will provide you with a consultation after the review is complete to address any of the concerns discovered. Professional condominium review companies typically charge $300 – $700 for a comprehensive report.
3. Red Flags to Consider:
- Reserve fund study
- Reserve fund report
- Management agreement
- Insurance certificate
- Budget of the corporation
- Recreational agreement (if applicable)
- Post tension cable report (if applicable)
- Most recent financial statements (both monthly and year end)
- Budget for the corporation
- Bylaws for the corporation
- Most recent approved and draft meeting minutes
- Annual general meeting minutes
- A statement setting out the monthly condominium contribution
- A statement detailing any structural deficiencies (if applicable)
- A copy of any lease agreement or exclusive use agreement (if applicable)
- Registered condominium plan
- CADS Sheet (condominium additional plan sheet certificate)
- Any H.O.A. (Home Owners Association) fee documentation (if applicable)
- Any proposed special resolution awaiting a vote (if applicable)
- Special resolution documentation (if applicable)
- Title for all titled areas (including parking and storage if not assigned)
- A copy of any easement, covenants, and restrictions (if applicable)
- Any technical report available (technical audit, building assessment etc.)
Have questions about condominium ownership you’d like to have answered by Mike Star? Click Here – Reach out! I’m happy to help you in your real estate goals.