Condominiums are the most popular housing choice these days, especially in a bustling city such as Toronto. Those of you hunting for a house or, specifically, a condominium for a living might be knowing the intricacies involved in the process. Looking for a condo is a great housing choice for individuals who understand the importance and value of a favorable location as well as amenities offered as a part of the property without having to maintain the property.
This means, no tiring work of spending hours over the weekend to clean the backyard or any other exhausting activities. There are two basic options to consider when we talk about a condo- you can either buy one or rent one. Just as any other house-hunt, a condo-hunt, too requires certain measures to be checked beforehand to ensure that you make the right pick.
There is a condo inspection checklist that you must make before you begin hunting for it. If you are a little confused about what to include in your checklist, here are a few pointers to help you out.
1. Floors and Ceilings of the Property
When you visit the condo for inspecting it, floors and ceilings should be at the top in your condo home inspection checklist as they are the most visible and essential elements of the condo. You must check if there are any spots on the floors or the ceilings.
In case you observe any spots or marks on the ceiling, it is a clear indication that there exists some issue with the main roof. Or, there is some water leakage in the building. Looking out for voids or spaces between the flooring of the condo and the baseboards is also important.
Any loose wood planks or the tiles in the flooring of the condo also hints of water damage or leakage problem in the property. Another thing to look out for is sloping in the flooring. Sloping indicated damaged floors and can turn out to be a major issue that needs to be repaired as soon as possible. (1)
2. Walls and Windows of the Condo
These are another essential in the condo inspection checklist. When it comes to walls of the condos, check for any cracks in them. Cracks in the walls imply some kind of problem with the foundation of the building.
Roughness in the walls or rugged feel in them could be a result of some kind of water problem in the property. Make sure you lookout for this thing.
Again, for the windows too, look for spotting issues. Spotting on the windows or walls clearly indicated mold issues. Make sure you open and close the windows at least a couple of times to make sure they are smooth and proper. When you shut the windows, make sure you hear a sealing sound of them. If you do, then that’s a good sign as it would mean the shut windows actually prevent the entry and exit of air from the condo rooms.
3. Kitchen and Washrooms of the Unit
The kitchen, as well as washrooms, are undoubtedly one of the most expensive rooms in a condo when it comes to renovating or maintaining them. Thus, make sure you have this pointer in your condo home inspection checklist when you go hunting for your future condo, your home.
Firstly, check properly for the fixtures as well as the appliances in both these spaces of the condos. There should not be any gaps or hollow spaces in the caulking. Also, ensure that all the fittings are proper for the furniture in these two rooms as well.
That is, check if the cabinets and drawers are easy to pull out and close and are in proper, smooth condition. Even the appliances should be properly cleaned, in the working condition and maintained well.
4. The Electrical System as Well as HVAC
This is a pointer that is actually supposed to be checked by the maintenance and inspection team of the condo. However, to ensure that you are finalizing the condo with no issues, make sure you check for the electrical system of the condo as well as the HVAC system. (2)
The things you should check for under this pointer include the heating and air conditioning system of the house. This should be looked into with more care if there is a centralized system in the condo that you are inspecting. Call up a professional to inspect the duct properly. The professional will check for all filters.
Also, the general functioning of the systems must be checked. Also, call up an electrician to test all the electrical outlets properly and check for the possibility of any fire hazards in the property. Remember, this is a very serious issue and shouldn’t be ignored from the condo inspection checklist under any circumstances as the repercussions can be very serious.
5. The Exteriors of the Condo Development
Even though this point might not sound that relevant to be considered as a part of the condo inspection checklist, it is actually an essential one. Checking for the condominium’s exteriors provides a deeper insight into the maintenance status of the condo.
You need to ensure that there are no stains, cracks, or any signs of water leakages on the outside walls. Also, there should be a facility for appropriate lighting. The walkways should be free from ice as well as snow in the winter months.
The parking space provided along with the condo should also be well-maintained and proper. In case there are any grounds or outdoor spaces that are a part of the condo exterior, they must all be properly maintained and cleaned too. The exteriors itself give the basic idea about the cleanliness and maintenance facilities for the interiors of the condo as well.
Check for peeling paint on the windows and doors, cracked sidewalks, driveways, foundations and chimneys. Worn or missing roof shingles could mean the whole roof has to be replaced. Check for leaking gutters and downspouts, broken windows, missing door handles and screens. Handrails should be present if there are more than two steps.
– Vickie Van Antwerp, Contributor at Pocket Sense
6. Condominium Amenities on Offer
To assure yourself a great living experience at the condo you finalize on, one pointer in your condo home inspection checklist should also be to look into the amenities that are offered as a part of the condo units. The common areas with special amenities determine the lifestyle that you will have them in the condo.
In today’s times, having facilities such as swimming pools, gym centers, and other meetings or workrooms are a common thing. However, the important thing to look into is that these facilities should be well-maintained and cared for.
Apart from these obvious things, other places such as the walkways, common terraces, lobbies, and lounges that are a part of the condominium development should be proper too and not have any underlying issues.
7. The Essential Documents Associated with the Condo Suite
When you purchase or lease out a condo suite, the Status Certificate that you receive for the condo will have certain information about the reports of any repairs, renovations or maintenance upgrades that are expected in the coming few months. (3)
You need to inquire about the major structural costs’ estimation that might be coming your way. Also, is there is any kind of fees that will be incurred upon you for any condo services or repairs that are due.
When you look into the maintenance requirements, if the maintenance is poor, it is a clear sign of low funds. Also, a low reserve fund can also probe to be a problematic factor in the future. You can watch this quick animation to learn more about condo documents.
8. The Commute and Accessibility Around the Condo Location
This point is another must-to-have in your condo inspection checklist. The reason for this is simple- even if your condo might look beautiful inside out, there are still many problems that you could face after shifting there.
A few of the most basic issues faced include the availability of basic commodities around the condo location as well as accessibility to various stores, schools, medical stores, etc. around the condos.
There must be a good grocery store, educational center, drug store, etc. as a basis when you move into the condo you have decided upon. Apart from these, the commute is another big thing to sort out beforehand. If you are a vehicle owner yourself, this might be a little less of a worry for you.
However, for others, looking for facilities like a subway station nearby or the presence of GO stations, streetcars, etc. make a difference. The highways that are accessible easily as well as the destinations that can be reached from the location quickly should be of good use. These were the most essential and must-have things that you should include in the condo inspection checklist that you prepare.
Remember, condo-living is supposed to facilitate ease and make your lifestyle exciting and joyous. Thus, when buying or renting a condo for a living, try not to compromise on these basic things. Keep a budget in mind; that is essential. However, don’t try to cut out on any of the above-mentioned criteria while in search of an ideal condo suite for yourself!
To learn more about new and upcoming condos in Canada, visit Precondo.
1. HomeAdvisor, How to Diagnose and Repair Sloping Floors, retrieved from https://www.homeadvisor.com/r/repairing-sloping-floors/
2. Florida Solar Energy Center, HVAC System, retrieved from http://www.fsec.ucf.edu/en/consumer/buildings/commercial/hvac.htm
3. Heenan Blaikie LLP, Purchasing a condominium – the status certificate, retrieved from https://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=c5d6f2d2-50ba-4bc5-87a2-d9481034d52a