Anne Hensel's Blog
A condo offers a great opportunity to enjoy a comfortable living space without the hassle of home exterior maintenance. As such, many property buyers are exploring condos in cities and towns nationwide.
However, buying a condo sometimes can be tricky, particularly for property buyers who are unfamiliar with the real estate market. Lucky for you, we're here to help take the guesswork out of purchasing a condo.
Let's take a look at three questions that condo buyers need to consider before they purchase a property.
1. Am I ready for condo life?
Owning a condo and owning a home are two very different things, and perhaps it is easy to understand why.
Like a homeowner, a condo owner has a property to call his or her own. But a condo community usually has a homeowners' association (HOA) in place that manages exterior maintenance and other tasks. This association also establishes rules and regulations that all condo owners must follow; otherwise, property owners may face fines.
Before you purchase a condo, it is paramount to prepare for condo life as much as possible. To do so, you may want to consult with friends or family members who have resided in condo communities over the years. These loved ones can share their condo living experiences with you to help you better understand what life will be like as a condo owner.
2. How much can I afford to pay for a condo?
Although you know that you'd like to purchase a condo, you still need to find out how much you can afford to pay for a property. Fortunately, banks and credit unions are available to help you determine how much you can spend on a condo.
Consult with several banks and credit unions to explore all of your home financing options. Then, you can select a mortgage that matches your expectations.
In addition, you may want to get pre-approved for a mortgage before you start your condo search. If you enter the real estate market with a budget in hand, you can narrow your condo search and speed up the property buying process.
3. Do I need to employ a real estate agent?
Ultimately, a real estate agent is a must-have for any condo buyer, at any time. This housing market professional can teach you the ins and outs of real estate and ensure that you can make an informed condo purchase.
A real estate agent strives to provide you with an outstanding condo buying experience. To accomplish this goal, he or she will work with you, learn about your condo buying goals and help you plan accordingly.
Furthermore, a real estate agent is unafraid to be honest. He or she will offer condo buying recommendations and suggestions as you check out a variety of properties. This housing market professional is happy to respond to your condo buying queries as well.
Streamline the process of buying a condo – consider the aforementioned questions, and you can move closer to acquiring an outstanding condo at an outstanding price.
Sometimes our dream home comes with not-so-dreamy features. One of those can be well water with a higher than desired rust content.
Of course, this isn’t necessarily a reason to pass up a home you are otherwise in love with. There are several solutions to keep in mind when making your decision.
The first thing you will want to do is have a water test done to test the levels and type of iron in the home's water. Knowing just how high the concentration of iron content is and the type will be a determining factor into which solution will be the best for your lifestyle and new home.
While you are having tests done you will also want to confirm that rust levels are indeed from the well and not the pipes themselves. Rusty pipes are a different topic altogether and require a different protocol and budget if taken on.
If rust concentrations are fairly low concentration you will just need a water softener installed. This will help to protect plumbing and appliances from effects of rust. It will also mean cleaner, and softer, clothes, less soap usage, and less scrubbing when it comes to cleaning surfaces like the bathroom tub. It’s important to note that you will need to use less soap with softened water since it creates more lather. Too much lather can damage your appliances and even lead to water leakage.
If iron levels are falling in the medium range you will want to opt for a filter specifically for iron. Greensand and oxidizing filters are the two most common. Be sure to have your filters custom sized to fit your homes water usage and the requirements it will call for to have the system function properly.
When iron levels are high a chlorination filtration system is the way to go. This system treats water before entering your lines, which saves your plumbing from potential damage over the years. You may also want to investigate what damage, if any, has been done to plumbing and if you will need to replace to ensure safe drinking water and a clean home.
What you need to know about high rust content if left untreated:
If you use bleach on laundry your whites will yellow due to a reaction with the rust.
You will need to regularly use a specialty cleaning product to remove rust stains from places like sinks, toilets and showers.
Build up of rust over time will not only damage plumbing and appliances but also affect your water pressure as a result.
You will need to invest in Iron-Out and use it regularly to flush your plumbing
You will want to do “backflushes” to clean out rust accumulation