How to Make a Smooth Transition from a Single-Family Home to Your First Condo

Posted on: March 2, 2017

Making the jump from a single-family home to condo living can seem equal parts daunting and exciting. On one hand, ditching your large, maintenance intensive home can mean a significant drop in cost of ownership. Plus, moving to a more urban area from family neighborhoods means easier access to your favorite restaurants and shopping. But at the same time, moving into a condo means downsizing, as a smaller living space comes with a smaller amount of storage. And replacing the backdrop of neatly trimmed lawns for the bustle of downtown brings on a completely different lifestyle. With these tips, you can help ease the strains of adjusting to a new condo, and enjoy all the convenience your new home has to offer.

Maintenance Costs Verses Maintenance Fees

As you prepare to move into a condo, you may be getting worried about costly fees or grounds keeping charges at your location. However, one of the benefits of living in a condo verses owning a single-family home is that the cost of ownership is actually significantly reduced. Between property insurance, maintenance, property taxes, and opportunity cost, the cost of home ownership is reportedly $864 a month per every $100,000 of value. That means if you’re living in a $500,000 home, you can expect to be paying a whopping $4,320 a month in cost of ownership. On the contrary, according to the U.S. census, a condo association fee is only $200 a month on average. Of course, this cost varies greatly between different associations.

Rules and Regulations

Every condominium association has a set of rules, regulations or bylaws. Tenants can expect rules as trivial as a ban on charcoal grills, to needing board approval to update your unit. This can come as a surprise if you’re coming from the freedom of a single-family home. The easiest way to avoid having trouble adapting is to ensure that you fully understand said rules before signing a lease or making a purchase on a condo. If the building you’re interested in doesn’t allow pets but you’ve got three cats and an iguana, it’s probably time to look for a different building. That being said, you’ll be able to get a feel for abnormally stringent bylaws once you start looking into what’s available in your area.

Change of Scenery  

Switching from the hum of lawnmowers to the sound of traffic on Sunday mornings might add strain to the transition from neighborhood to condo living. The quickest way to get past these woes is to get swept up into what your new area has to offer. Condominium developments are often going to be far closer to restaurants, bars, and other bits of urban culture than family neighborhoods. Get familiar with your surroundings. Treat yourself to the corner coffee bar in the mornings, or head for drinks after dinner without worrying about having to drive home. You’ll quickly find that the ease of access to all your city has to offer far surpasses the comfort of your single-family home.

Reducing belongings

Your new condo will probably be significantly smaller than the single-family home you’re used to. At first, this can seem like a bad thing; how can you begin to decide what stays and what goes? But realistically, this is an opportunity to streamline and simplify your life, and may bring you more happiness in the long run. You’ll come to see that excess belongings from rooms that you rarely used in your single-family home are easily forgotten. Moreover, these are items that you no longer have to worry or think about. Stressing less about belongings will let you better enjoy your first condo and give you more time to adjust to your new lifestyle.

There are a plethora of reasons to move from a single-family home to a condominium. Whether you’re looking for a completely new environment or simply desire a smaller living space, making the jump to your first condo can seem like a major change. But if you’re well prepared, you’ll find the move to be exciting, and refreshing, and be able to quickly shift into a fun, new lifestyle.

If you’re thinking about leaving your single-family home, consider pre-purchasing a condo at NEXUS Seattle. With affordable new, state-of-the-art units available, this is a great option to put a couple of years between you and your move. Register here for more information!

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