Selling your house and buying a condo apartment is elective. You don’t have to move, but trading the responsibilities of home ownership for the relative freedom of condominium living is a very attractive option. The best time to make such a decision is when you are old enough to appreciate leaving the snow and gardening behind and still young enough to enjoy the travel and worry-free absences from home that condominium living affords.
If 2016 is your year for a renaissance in housing, here are the steps I would recommend you take:
1. Ask your real estate agent to give you a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) on your home. A CMA is a look at recent sales of similar properties in your area with an assessment of how your property should be priced when it is listed for sale. Knowing the value of what you own can help you decide what you are willing to spend.
2. Tell your agent as specifically as possible what is on your wish list. Armed with this information, he/she will be able to begin identifying possibilities. If you want a 2 bedroom, 1500 square foot condominium apartment in Lawrence Park, your agent can zero in on properties that meet those specifications. If your list includes Yonge and Eglinton, Yonge and St. Clair, or Yorkville, your agent can search those neighbourhoods too. If your heart is set on a Rosedale-area condominium with a 24-hour concierge and valet parking, you can receive alerts only for buildings that fit your criteria.
3. Many people end up wanting to live in a specific development. The best apartment-buying decisions include an evaluation of the building itself. While all condominium purchases are conditional upon the Buyer being satisfied with the Status Certificate and related documents, ask your agent if access to such information before making your offer is possible. Advance knowledge of the Status can be most helpful.
4. Start the process of decluttering your house and its basement now. Condo buying is an opportunity-driven event. When you find the right place, you will want to sell your present house quickly. This will be much easier if the heavy lifting has already been accomplished.
The key to a stress free move is being prepared. “Why wait for spring?...Do it NOW!” When spring does come, you will be ready.