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Linda Palfi
CNC Properties
Box 47033 Creekside, Calgary, Alberta
P: 403-998-7732
F: 403-592-8002

Condo living - the convenient option


The benefits of condominium living are sometimes overlooked by those unfamiliar with the concept. Simply put, condominium combines the rights of private-property home ownership--including investment value--with efficient shared responsibility for common services. As well, the price to get into a condo home is considerably less than a single-family house.


In the case of high-quality apartment living, for example, condominium ownership allows us to own an apartment home, rather than being limited to renting it, as was the case just a few decades ago. And these days, a condo investment appreciates faster than the rate of inflation, giving us a likely future return on investment, as well was a comfortable roof over our heads in the meantime.


A particular convenience of condominium living is the centralized management of all the common-area cleaning, gardening, snow shovelling and maintenance that non-condo house owners must each do themselves, or need to arrange to have done. (Note: It is possible to own houses organized as condos-very convenient!) Obviously, it's far more cost-effective to have 40 or 100 apartment, townhouse, villa or condo house owners do these things as a group than individually. And usually a professional firm even takes care of hiring the help!


While people commonly refer to a monthly "condominium fee", it's not really a fee at all, but a contribution by neighbors to their shared costs for maintaining their own investments in their homes, and to provide the level of services and recreation they themselves choose to maintain. Calculated by the square foot, condo fees are lower than the realistic cost of heating and maintaining a single-family home in a traditional subdivision.


To help people get along--and to maintain investment value--condominium developments have bylaws setting standards of behavior that often far exceed those of rental apartment buildings. So not only do we see that the buildings, grounds and parking of condominiums is of a high standard, but people living there know what the rules are and for the most behave accordingly.


If you want, you can become involved in your condo corporation board of directors and help to run your condo development. How many people get to help direct or chair a multi-million-dollar-value corporation? And if you prefer not, stay on the sidelines, watch the janitor/gardener/plumber do his work, and tell your Board when he?s not doing a good job. In other words, condo life can be as involved or as involvement-free as you choose it to be.


The demographics of aging baby-boomers, smaller families and more singles is creating an increasing switch to condominium living. As well, low rental apartment availability combined with low interest rates is pushing a growing shift to buying quality condominium homes of every style, rather than renting. Values of Calgary condos are rising faster than those of single-family homes. Every indication is that this trend will accelerate.


Whether inner city or suburban, and whether highrise or townhouse-style or even single-family-home style, condominium ownership is increasingly popular. From the modest and surprisingly affordable to the spectacularly luxurious, condos offer choices for every income and lifestyle

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