It’s understandable that people see their properties as investments. And in real estate, everyone expects their property’s value to rise in a span of time. Often, we look into the property’s location and judge the value of its growth depending on the progress of the area it stands on. But one important thing we overlook about a property is how it’s maintained.
First time condominium buyers are lured using the prominence of a location by developers or sellers. The convenience of living within an urbanized place where everything is easily reached is the golden promise on every sale proposal. But the small details on how a condominium building is maintained is usually not mentioned in these deals. If a buyer is unaware about the poor maintenance of the building, this could negatively impact his investment.
Real Estate Appraisers, Brokers, and Bank Property Valuations
Let’s say you want to sell your condo unit. It’s first best to hire an expert for you to know the value of your unit. Real Estate Appraisers are professionals who performs a complete and detailed analysis of a property to determine its market value. Part of their job is to asses the building’s condition and look for unusual things that can affect the the unit owner. If they find issues, they will first advise you to fix those before you could sell your property and give you an estimate value. If these problems are not addressed or are beyond your control, then the estimated price of your property will most likely be negatively affected.
It will also be difficult to look for a broker who can help you find a buyer. Real estate brokers follow strict regulations that guarantees both sellers and buyers are protected. If maintenance regulations are not met by the building officials, brokers may opt not to handle such listings.
On the side of the buyer, bank property valuations matter. It is what banks use as an indicator for lending buyers the funds they need to purchase a property. It is an assessment of its value based on a number of factors which includes the conditions of both the building and the unit. If the banks valuation is low, they might only lend the buyer a lower budget. Thus making the sale more strenuous.
Causes of poor building maintenance for condominiums
These are indicators to watch out for especially when choosing to buy a unit. If you’re already a unit owner, then these are concerns that you can alert to your building admin.
If a building allows more people in than what it’s regularly able to accommodate, then maintenance operations should frequently be done. A building’s high population may cause issues for garbage disposal, cleanliness, and technical maintainability.
“Busy environment” is a vague term here. It can mean plenty of people using the elevator at the same time or the building is also used as a commercial place, not just residential.
External factors may also cause problems such as pollution from highways or nearby factories can deteriorate a building’s facade.
Budget cuts and residents unwilling to pay rising admin fees
Paying admin fees is part of condo living. It is usually the Home Owners Association that decides the raising and implementation of payments. These fees are important as it covers the costs of security, landscaping, sanitation, garbage disposal, repairs, and other forms of building maintenance. But due to economic constraints, forcing residents to pay a higher fee can be a difficult decision. What happens then if they don’t raise the fees is that they end up cross cutting their budget and go for cheaper alternatives.
Old building with old facilities
Old buildings can be hard to maintain as spare parts of the building maybe unavailable or hard to acquire by the admin. Thus delays on repairs of elevators and other mechanical functions could happen frequently.
Tenants not following building guidelines
Condominiums have strict guidelines of what you can and can not do. These guidelines are there to preserve the orderliness, safety, and integral structure of the building. When tenants are unaware of these guidelines, or willingly decide to go against them, this could cause some serious hazards to all other occupants of the building.
An example of an unfortunate event was the 2013 Serendra Explosion. According to official investigations, one of the unit owners had an unauthorized renovation work which caused a gas leak and resulted to an explosion. The incident took three lives and a few more injuries.
Tips to check if a condominium building is well maintained
It’s always advisable to consider the age of the building. The older it is, the more problems it may have had. But it’s more important to look how the building officials handle such cases. It’s good to ask them questions before moving in, such as:
- How regular are maintenances and repairs?
- What problems has the building faced before and how were they solved?
- How old are the elevators and what are some back up plans incase of technical malfunctions?
- Do they conduct fire and earthquake drills?
- Are smoke detectors working?
- Are fire exists always unblocked and accessible?