Buying a beachfront condo can be a great investment, whether you intend to live in it seasonally or live there year-round. Typically, condos have amenities that single-family homes don’t – including resort-style swimming pools, spectacular gulf views, concierge services and state-of-the-art fitness centers.
Purchasing a condo is a lot like buying a single-family, detached home, but for many people, the “must-have” list looks a lot different. Aside from the amenities you want your new community to have, here’s what you should look for in a Seaside, Florida condo:
- Condo association rules (commonly referred to as covenants, conditions and restrictions, or CC&Rs)
- Special assessments on the condo building
- What type of reserve fund the condo board holds
- Minutes from the most recent board meetings
What to Look for in a Condo in Seaside
When you’re looking for a Seaside, Florida condo for sale, the list of community amenities you want will steer you toward the right community – but there’s more to look for than amenities. Most of the additional information you need revolves around the condominium owner’s association and funding.
Check the Condo’s CC&Rs
Every condominium owner’s association has its own covenants, conditions and restrictions. These bylaws typically govern what you can and can’t do on the property, including what types of pets you can keep on the premises, how much noise you can make and where you can store recreational vehicles. It’s essential that you ask your Realtor® to get you a copy of a community’s CC&Rs before you make an offer on a property – that way, you’ll know if you can live with the association’s rules.
Find Out if There Are Special Assessments on the Building
When you own a condo, you’ll pay monthly, quarterly or annual dues to the condo owner’s association. However, sometimes you’ll have to pay what’s called a special assessment. The sum can vary, but it’s used to fund a renovation or to replenish underfunded reserves. If something major breaks in your condo building and the reserve fund doesn’t have enough to cover it, you can expect to pay a special assessment.
Find Out How Much Money is in the Reserve Fund
Each condo association maintains a reserve fund. The money in it comes from monthly, quarterly or annual dues that every homeowner pays. The money in the reserve fund pays for landscaping, the roof, community amenities, general maintenance, security and other features. If the reserve fund is low – which is often the case with poorly managed associations – residents could be at-risk for special assessments.
The good news: Every few years, most condo associations do a reserve study. That lets board members determine how much money should be in the reserve fund in order to cover all the building’s projected expenses. The bad news: Not all condos fill up the reserve fund. Your solution is to find out how much the reserve study says the condo association needs, and then find out how much money the reserve fund has.
Get the Minutes From Recent Board Meetings
What are the most common complaints in a condo building where you’re interested in buying? You’ll be able to find out if you have the minutes from recent meetings. Even better: Try to talk to current owners who live in the building. You need to know whether the association makes repairs quickly, whether the fees are fair and what homeowners in the building complain about so you can make the best possible decision.
What Else to Look for in a Seaside, Florida Condo
Your personal list of must-haves for your next home might include a swimming pool, fitness center, barbecue area – and whatever it is, you’ll find it along 30A.
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About 30A Local Properties:
30A Local Properties is located in Grayton Beach, FL and services the South Walton community. The team of locals confidently offers the experience of over six hundred South Walton real estate transactions, nearly three decades of banking experience in commercial and residential property holding positions, and over a decade of entrepreneurial real estate experience in property investments and management. Visit our website at www.30alocalproperties.com or stop by our office and meet the team:
30A Local Properties
35 Clayton Lane, Suite B
Grayton Beach, FL 32459
P: (850) 213 3048
F: (850) 213 0035