Condo Guide

What Is a Condominium?
Types of Ottawa Condos
Freehold Ottawa Condominiums
What Do You Own When You Buy a Condo?
Condo Rules and Restrictions
Moving From Single-Family to Multi-Unit
Ottawa Condo Insurance
Renting Ottawa Condos
Choosing the Right Ottawa Condo
Ottawa Condo Costs
Ottawa Condo Checklist

What Is a Condominium?

When people refer to a condominium, they are typically speaking of a form of ownership as opposed to a place to make a home. They are often thought of as being high-rise residential buildings, but could be applied to townhouse complexes, individual houses and low-rise residential buildings. In British Columbia they are known as strata and in Quebec they are referred to syndicates of co-ownership as opposed to the condominiums in Ottawa.

Condos consist of two parts. The first part is a collection of private dwellings called "units". Each unit is owned by and registered in the name of the purchaser of the unit. The second part consists of the common elements of the building that may include lobbies, hallways, elevators, recreational facilities, walkways, gardens, etc. Common elements may also include structural elements and mechanical and electrical services. The ownership of these common elements is shared amongst the individual unit owners, as is the cost for their operation, maintenance and ongoing replacement.

Each unit owner has an undivided interest in the common elements of the building. This ownership interest is often referred to as a "unit factor". The unit factor for any particular unit will generally be calculated in proportion to the value that the unit has in relation to the total value of all of the units in the condominium corporation. The unit factor will tell you what your ownership percentage is in the common elements and will be used in calculating the monthly fees that you must pay towards their upkeep and renewal.

The creation of a condo is regulated by provincial or territorial condominium legislation and municipal guidelines. It can be created in many different ways. In some provinces, a developer, or other interested party, may register a declaration to create a condominium, while in others, an application may be made to have title issued for the units pursuant to an "approved plan of condominium". The operation of condominiums is also governed by provincial or territorial legislation and the condominium corporation's own declaration, by-laws and rules.

Once a condominium corporation has been established, a Board of Directors, elected by, and generally made up of, the individual condominium owners, takes responsibility for the management of the corporation's business affairs. There is usually a turnover meeting where this transfer of responsibility takes place. Each unit owner has voting rights at meetings. Your voting rights will generally be in proportion to your unit factor.

Types of Ottawa Condos

Residential condominiums tend to be:

  • high-rise or low-rise (under four stories),
  • town or row houses,
  • duplexes (one unit over another),
  • triplexes (stacks of three units),
  • single detached houses,
  • stacked townhouses or freehold plots.

There could also be mixed-use condominiums, where part of the building is used for commercial use and the other part used for residential life. There are a variety of sizes and diverse features and condos Ottawa condos could be found in almost every price range.

Freehold Ottawa Condominiums

The biggest difference between a freehold Ottawa condominium and a regular Ottawa condominium is what is included as part of the unit. In a freehold condominium, the person owns the plot of land and the structure that is on the land. The owner would be responsible for the care and upkeep of the land and house, including the roof, exterior walls, garden, lawn, driveway and garage.

With a freehold condominium, the common property elements might include access roads to the units, recreational facilities, visitor parking area or a park with a playground. These items may be the responsibility of the condominium corporation. All unit owners pay a monthly condominium fee toward their upkeep.

With a regular townhouse or house condominium, the unit typically consists of the interior of the house itself, while the exterior of the house and the plot of land on which the unit sits are considered part of the common elements. This means that repair and maintenance of items like exterior walls, windows, lawns, gardens and driveways may be the responsibility of the condominium corporation. In a freehold condominium, you usually have more freedom to make improvements, such as landscaping features, to the unit. However, there are usually provisions that give the condominium corporation some control over owners modifying the unit, such as determining when the roof will be repaired, and what colour the shingles must be. So if you want to change the colour of your door or build a deck in your backyard, you may have to ask for permission from the Board of Directors.

Note: In some provinces, there are bare/vacant land condominiums. The land and any structure on it make up the unit and maintenance can be fully the responsibility of the condominium corporation or the unit owner.

What Do You Own When You Buy a Condo?

When buying an Ottawa condominium, a person would own the unit, along with a percentage of the common property elements allocated to the unit. The percentage of the common elements and the boundaries of each unit that is owned may vary between condominiums. This depends on how they are specified in the condominium's governing documents. There are times where the unit boundary can be at the backside of the interior drywall of the unit's dividing walls or could be the center line of the unit's wall. At the time of purchase, it is important to consider the boundaries of your condominium, especially if there are alterations and renovations as a potential part of the purchase. Equipment, systems, finishes and other things that are contained only in an individual unit are included. The right to use one or more parking spot and storage areas may be included even though a person seldom owns that space.

For a freehold condominium (or a bare/vacant land condominium), the unit may be the entire house including the exterior walls, the roof and in some cases, the land surrounding the structure. Prior to making a purchase, you may wish to hire a professional surveyor to review the site plan for the condominium corporation so you know exactly where you unit's boundaries lay.

Components of building systems that serve more than one unit, such as structural elements and mechanical and electrical services, are often considered part of the common property elements, particularly when they are located outside of the unit boundaries specified in the condominium's governing documents.

There may be some parts of the condominium complex that are called "exclusive use common property elements." They are outside the unit boundaries, but are for the exclusive use of the owner of a particular unit. Balconies, parking spaces, storage lockers, driveways and front or rear lawn areas are common examples of exclusive use common property elements. It is important to be aware of any exclusive use common property elements before you make an offer to purchase a condominium. While these spaces are exclusive to your use, there may be restrictions on how and when you use them. For instance, you may not be able to park a boat, RV or commercial vehicle in your assigned parking spot. There may also be restrictions on what you can place on your balcony.

Condo Rules and Restrictions

There is a unique set of rules, regulations and by-laws that governs every condominium and may be very strict or very relaxed depending on the corporation of the condominium. These are essential in making sure that the condominiums are properly maintained and operated, while defining the rights and obligations of the individual owners. Condominiums may have restrictions on the number of people living in each unit, pets, noise, parking and when certain amenities may be used, while at the same time having respect for the rules regarding individual owners.

Many condominiums have strict rules concerning the alteration of the unit space or its appearance. For example, the condominium corporation may require all the exterior doors of units to be the same colour to keep the architectural and community aspect of the condominium intact. Additionally, you may have to get the permission from the condominium's Board of Directors before you change exterior fixtures or install a satellite dish, especially as some changes may affect the condominium structure or safety.

Noise is an important consideration, especially for people moving from a single-family dwelling to a multi-unit condominium. Many condominiums have rules regarding what noise levels will be tolerated and at what hours. For example, if you are hosting a party in your unit, you may be asked to turn the music down at a specific hour. You may wish to clarify the rules regarding noise, and if possible, talk to current residents about any noise problems they have experienced in the past and how they were handled.

Individual condominium owners may be obliged to attend condominium meetings or serve on condominium boards and committees. Almost all condominiums have requirements for the payment of monthly condominium fees. There can also be mandatory charges for unforeseen repairs to the condominium common elements.

Ensure you carefully review and consider all rules and obligations when considering the purchase of a condominium. They should be available from the unit's vendor (the seller), the property manager or the Board of Directors. The rules of the condominium will be clearly outlined in the condominium governing documents, and you should become familiar with them prior to purchasing a particular condominium unit.

While the rules and regulations of condominiums may initially seem to be overly strict, particularly to those used to rental housing or owning their own home, they help to ensure that condominiums are safe and enjoyable communities to live in for all concerned.

Moving into a Condo - Things to Consider

Living in a multi-unit building tends to be different from living in a detached house and there are things that need to be considered. For one thing, since the neighbors are living much closer together, it is easier to hear the noise from other units and there tends to be strict rules about how much noise is tolerated and when it is tolerated. Something else that needs to be considered is being able to compromise. You are not the only person who has a say and that will cut down on when things get done or how things look. It may also mean that there are things that need to be shared like a common laundry area. With reasonable notice, most condominium legislation will allow an authorized person to enter your unit to carry out any inspection and maintenance of the unit that is needed. Condominiums tend to be suited for specific lifestyles such as senior citizens and people who have young children. There also tends to be provisions regarding pets and these policies should be taken into consideration before moving in. In many condominiums, there tends to be several forms of security services such as security guards and closed circuit cameras in lobbies and parking garages to ensure the safety of the unit owners and authorized personnel. There are some condominiums that require guests to sign in and out of the condominium. There are many condominium owners that live in their units, but there are condominiums that rent a large percentage of units to other people. This is important to consider because there may not be as much pride in condominiums that rent a lot of its units as opposed to those where the units are owned and lived in instead of rented.


In a multi-unit, your neighbours are much closer, so you may hear them more. Many condominiums have strict rules regarding how much noise will be tolerated, and at what hours of the day. Noise can also come from the mechanical services such as plumbing, heating, ventilation and air-conditioning systems, elevators and garbage chutes. When purchasing a condominium, you may want to consider the location of these services relative to the unit you are thinking of buying. Additionally, when buying a new condominium, you may want to ask the developer if any sound transmission reduction measures have been used in the construction of the building's walls, ceilings and floors.When buying an existing condominium, try to visit the unit during the evenings or weekend to get a sense of what the noise may be like at the time you are most likely to be in the building. Consider the location of the unit relative to elevators and garbage chutes. Check to see if the unit faces a busy highway. If so, air-conditioning might be a necessary feature so that windows can be kept shut in the summer.


Condominium living involves compromise. In return for having someone else fix the roof or cut the lawn, you will no longer have the final say in what colour you want your shingles to be or the timing of yard maintenance.

Your condominium unit will likely be considerably smaller than your current home. You'll need to consider which furniture and appliances will fit and what you might have to leave behind. For instance, your unit may not be able to accommodate a washer-dryer set which may mean having to use a common laundry room.


Under most provincial condominium legislation, with reasonable notice, a person authorized by the condominium corporation may enter your unit to carry out inspection and maintenance of the common elements of the condominium (such as inspection and repair of parts of the common elements such as windows, mechanical and electrical systems that serve your unit and others).


Many condominiums are specially suited for a certain lifestyles, such as families with young children, or seniors. Any condominium provisions regarding pets should be known as well. It is important to ensure that the prevalent lifestyle of the condominium you are considering fits your lifestyle.


Many condominiums offer increased security services, such as closed-circuit cameras in lobbies and parking garages and security guards, to ensure that only unit owners and authorized personnel can access the building. Your condominium may require that any guests to your unit sign in and out of the building. Make sure you are comfortable with the security arrangements before buying.

Unit Occupancy

While many owners of condominium units actually live in their units, some condominium buildings have a large percentage of the units rented out to others. If this is important to you, try to find out from the property manager what percentage of the building is owner occupied. This is an important consideration, as a condominium building dominated by rental occupancies may not show the same pride of ownership and sense of community and security as a building that is fully owner occupied. Additionally, absentee owners may not have the same maintenance and repair priorities for the building as owners who actually live in the building.

Ottawa Condo Insurance

Both the owner and the condominium corporation are required to have insurance but the requirements will differ. The corporation may need to be responsible for the common areas and units; the corporation's property, personal liability concerning claims for bodily injury and property damage occurring on condominium property or is the cause of the condominium corporation; boilers and other equipment; directors and officers insurance; and all perils that are recorded in the condominium governing documents. The unit owner could be responsible in insuring their personal property such as appliances, jewelry, and items stored in lockers; improvements made to the unit, depending on the provincial legislation; and personal liability.

The corporation may be responsible for insuring:

  • Common areas and units
  • The corporation's property, such as furniture, equipment, vehicles, etc.
  • Personal liability - against claims for bodily injury and/or property damage occurring on the condominium property or caused by some act or omission of the condominium corporation
  • Boilers and equipment (for example, elevators, HVAC systems, etc.)
  • Directors and Officers insurance - to respond to claims made personally against a director or officer of the condominium
  • All perils as per the condominium governing documents
The unit owner may be responsible for insuring:

  • Personal property contents such as appliances, furniture and jewellery, and items stored in lockers
  • Improvements and betterments made to the unit (for example, finishing a basement, installing new cabinets). Check your provincial legislation to find out if insurance for improvements is your responsibility
  • Personal liability

Renting Ottawa Condos

While many condominium buyers purchase their units with the intent of renting it out to a third party, they need to confirm this through a review of the governing documents and the provincial legislation of the condominium. Questions that could be asked during the time a person is choosing a condominium could concern the unit boundaries, maintenance obligations, management style, altering the appearance of the unit, insurance obligations of the owner, if the condominium corporation has the minimum insurance required for the territorial legislation and the rules that concern number of occupants; pets, noise, parking and any other concerns.

Summary: Questions to ask when choosing a condominium

  • What are the unit boundaries?
  • What will my maintenance obligations be?
  • What management style is being used, and am I comfortable with it?
  • What are the rules regarding the allowable number of occupants, noise, pets, amenities, parking, etc, and how are these upheld?
  • Can I alter my unit's appearance? If I want to change something, what procedure do I have to follow to get permission?
  • Does the condominium corporation have the minimum insurance required by my provincial or territorial legislation?
  • What will my insurance obligations be?

Choosing The Right Ottawa Condo

There are various sizes and kinds of building forms when looking at condominiums such as office or warehouse space that was converted into condominiums, re-sale condominiums; and newly constructed condominiums. Potential buyers of the condominiums need to be aware of the differences between the condominiums and how it will affect their lifestyles.

New, Re-Sale or Conversion-What Are the Differences?

The term "New" is applied to condominium buildings that are either under construction or have been newly completed, while the term "Conversion" can mean the building was previously used for something else but has been, or is to be, renovated for residential use. For example, many loft style condominiums are converted from former commercial or industrial buildings. Conversions may also refer to the changing of units from rental units to condominium units. Both new and conversion condominiums are usually purchased from a developer. "Re-sale" condominiums are units that have already been occupied, typically in older buildings, and are offered for sale by the current owner.

New Condominiums

Newly constructed condominiums can be an attractive option for the prospective owner. They offer all of the benefits of a newly constructed building (fresh appearance, modern fittings, surfaces, elevators, appliances) while providing unit owners with the chance to customize their units.

You can purchase a new condominium from the developer either before or during its construction and well before the condominium corporation is formed. A developer may have some unsold units available after the condominium has been completed and registered. In some market conditions, a developer may wait to sell a majority (or all) of the units before registering the condominium corporation or starting construction. Deposits are typically required to secure, or reserve, a condominium unit in a new development.

When looking over the drawings and specifications, ensure that you are aware of the basis of any floor area measurements: do they reflect the actual floor area of the unit or do they include the exterior and interior wall floor space areas as well? You should also be aware of plans to reduce the ceiling height in any locations in the unit to accommodate ductwork and other mechanical and electrical services. This can have an impact on the aesthetics of the unit and affect the eventual location of lighting fixtures and furniture as well as wall decorations and fittings. Similarly, be aware of the future location of heating and air-conditioning equipment, ventilators and hot water heaters as this can affect the availability and aesthetics of the space in your unit.

Other important issues to consider in the purchase of a new condominium are related to construction quality. Some key questions to consider include: Are there any special provisions to limit noise between units? How are the units heated, cooled and ventilated? How are odours controlled? Is the building energy-efficient? Who operates and maintains the heating and air conditioning systems? What options are available for suite wall and floor finishes, cabinets and fixtures?

You should also be aware that the view from your unit might be subject to change if the building is being constructed in a newly developed area or as a part of a larger complex. Be sure to ask about the future construction plans for adjacent open areas as your view may change significantly with the construction of a neighbouring high-rise.

When shopping around for a new condominium, it is important to ensure that you are aware of what is and what is not included in the purchase price. For instance, are there amenities such as pools and parking? How is access to such amenities paid for? Are finishes within the units included in the purchase price? Are there other charges over and above the purchase price you should be aware of? Are utilities (gas, electricity and water charges) covered in the monthly condominium fees or not? All such questions must be considered to ensure that you can compare the overall costs associated with different condominiums.

Rules and regulations for new condominiums vary from province to province, therefore it is a good idea to check your provincial legislation. New home warranties are often available for newly constructed condominiums - make yourself knowledgeable about what the warranties cover and for how long.

Quite often, there is a lengthy wait before a new condominium project is completed and you can move in. It is always important to evaluate the current state of the construction project. Consider whether or not it seems reasonable that the project will be completed by the date set out in the purchase agreement from the developer before making your moving and financing arrangements.

Agreements of purchase and sale may contain provisions that allow the developer to extend the dates for making the units available for occupancy. This can be problematic if you have made arrangements to vacate your existing housing by a specific date based on the original closing date. If this is an important consideration for you, ensure that you are aware of any occupancy delay clause in your purchase agreement and plan accordingly. You should also check your provincial homeowner protection legislation to learn your rights in cases where agreed upon occupancy dates are missed.

Disclosure Statements:

In some jurisdictions, in compliance with legislation, the developer of a new condominium must provide you with a "disclosure statement" before the sale agreement is binding. This includes, among other things, a summary of the condominium's features/amenities, the condominium's governing documents and budget for the first year after registration. This should give you some indication of the rules, regulations and financial situation of the condominium corporation before you buy into it.

Your province may have legislation that provides a "cooling off" period during which buyers can review the information contained in the disclosure statement and rescind their agreement to purchase if they are not comfortable with their original purchase decision. Ensure you obtain and carefully review the disclosure statement within the specified timeframe. If a cooling off period is not provided for in your provincial condominium legislation, try making it a condition of your offer to purchase to allow you to have a few days to review this information.

New Home Warranties:

Most provinces have new home warranty programs, which include new condominium projects. Warranty programs are put in place to ensure that new dwellings are properly constructed and that they meet the construction specifications. Warranty programs provide for the reporting of defects in, or omissions of, warrantied elements within specific timeframes. Often, the developer makes arrangements for independent inspection companies to audit the condominium, individual units and common elements within the first year of construction. The developer is responsible for correcting defects in, or omissions of, warrantied elements that occur during the warranty period. Should the developer default on this obligation, the warranty program can provide funding to correct deficiencies in warrantied elements up to a specified maximum dollar amount. All of the owners of new condominiums are expected to cooperate with the new home warranty inspections and to report any defects or omissions in their units. You should be aware that new home warranties do not cover every item that one might construe as a defect. Be sure you are aware of what the warranty does and does not cover, and for how long, before making a claim. New home warranties may also protect the deposit you place on your new condominium, up to a maximum amount, in case the developer cannot, or will not complete your unit, through no fault of your own. Check with your provincial or territorial government to find out more about the warranty program as program coverage varies from province to province.

Advantages of buying a new condominium may include:
  • A lower purchase price (depending upon market conditions)
  • More choice of locations within the building (if applicable)
  • A broader range of options and/or upgrades
  • Newer buildings have less risk of having to undergo costly, noisy and intrusive repairs and renovations
  • New home warranty protection
Disadvantages of buying a new condominium may include:
  • Because construction may not have started, you cannot "see" what you are buying and must rely on artist sketches and floor plans (which may change). Be sure to have the unit's boundaries, location, finishes, materials, chattels, etc. clearly specified in the purchase agreement.
  • Your initial deposit will be tied up for the duration of construction.
  • Financial institutions may not give you a mortgage on an unregistered condominium.
  • Construction of your unit may not be completed by the expected date.
  • You may move into your unit while construction continues in others - this can be noisy and disruptive.
Conversion Condominiums

Buying a conversion condominium in the early stages of development is similar to buying a new condominium. The biggest difference is that the exterior of the building (or building envelope) already exists. The majority of the construction project usually consists of modifications to some of the common property components and the creation of individual unit spaces. The transfer of the title of ownership may not take place until after occupancy. You should check with your provincial government to find out if the warranty program in your province covers condominium conversion projects.

Advantages of buying a conversion may include:
  • Many of the same advantages of buying a new condominium apply to conversions, (e.g. choice of unit, opportunities for upgrades, etc.).
  • Some conversions offer unique designs, (e.g. lofts).
  • Converted units are often, but not always, somewhat less expensive than a comparable sized new unit.
  • Conversions may be located in established and desirable parts of cities that are well served by entertainment, educational, transit and other amenities.
Disadvantages of buying a conversion may include:
  • As new home warranty programs may not apply to conversion condominiums (check with your provincial program), there may not be construction warranties other than that offered by the developer.
  • The building structure and perhaps some of its internal components will already be old, which may mean major (hence costly) repairs may be needed sooner rather than later. This could be problematic if the condominium corporation has not had sufficient time to build an adequate reserve fund. This may have an impact on condominium fees and extraordinary charges to the unit owners.
  • Occupancy dates can be changed due to construction delays.
Existing/Re-Sale Condominiums

One of the advantages of purchasing an existing condominium is that you get to see the unit, building and grounds before you make your purchase. You also have the opportunity to meet other unit owners, speak with the Board of Directors and ask questions to the property manager. Consider the age of the building and what repairs have been made and when. Ensure that the condominium is well maintained and managed. All of this will provide you with valuable information as to whether or not the condominium is right for you.

Estoppel/Status Certificates:

When making an offer on a re-sale unit, ensure it is conditional upon obtaining, and having the time to review, the corporation documents available to the purchaser under provincial legislation, including an estoppel or status certificate. There may be a fee for this certificate, but it will give you the opportunity to review information including the condominium's governing documents, financial statements and insurance coverage. It is important to thoroughly review these documents, as once you sign the offer to purchase you are contractually bound and cannot change your mind if, for example, you later find out the condominium does not allow pets or requires major repairs. In Alberta, there are services available to help you with the review of condominium document packages. In other provinces you should ask your lawyer or notary to help you review them. Provincial new home warranty programs do not protect deposits made when buying a re-sale condominium and won't provide protection for construction defects once the applicable warranty periods have expired. Therefore, it is important to have the purchase of the unit contingent upon the satisfactory inspection of the unit and building by a qualified home inspector, professional engineer or architect.

Advantages of buying a re-sale condominium may include:
  • You get what you see.
  • There are no lengthy waiting periods before you can move in unless provided for in the condition of sale.
  • Deposits are often much lower for re-sale purchases and there is no GST.
  • You can check out the condominium "community" in advance to see if the corporation is well run and the people who live in it are compatible with your needs and lifestyle.
  • Older condominiums can have larger unit sizes.
Disadvantages of buying a re-sale condominium may include:
  • Fewer options with regard to choice of unit (within the building), decorating, or upgrades.
  • Older re-sale condominiums may require more maintenance and repair than new ones.
  • The amenities that you may find desirable (e.g. a workout room or whirlpool, high speed Internet connection, security features) may not be available.
  • Older resale units may not be as energy efficient due to different construction standards in newer buildings.
  • Major repairs may be coming due that will require extra charges to the unit owners if the reserve fund is underfunded.
  • You will only receive the portion of the new home warranty that has not yet expired.

Ottawa Condo Costs

The potential condominium owner should know how much that needs to be set aside in order to purchase and comfortably live in the condominium that is being considered. It is also important to be aware of the costs that are incurred for each of the units that are being considered so that it would be possible to make comparisons.

Purchase Price: For new construction, the purchase price may include:
  • Unit sale price
  • Upgrades (negotiable)
  • Development charges
  • PST on chattels (e.g. appliances) being purchased with the unit
  • GST on the sale price
  • Utility hook-up fees
  • Landscaping fees
  • In some provinces, two months common expenses to build the reserve fund
  • Occupancy fees (from occupancy closing to title closing) which may include: - Estimated common expenses based on the disclosure statement budget - Estimated realty taxes on the unit - Interest on the balance is due on closing
  • Warranty program enrolment fees Any costs over and above the basic unit purchase price should be clearly outlined in the agreement of purchase and sale.
You should budget for these charges when you are considering buying. At final closing you will be required to pay the following costs:
  • Remainder of purchase price
  • Legal fees and disbursements
  • PST and GST on extras or upgrades to unit finishes, equipment and systems if not included in purchase price
  • Provincial land transfer tax
Many of these additional costs do not apply to re-sale units, since they were already paid and/or factored into the purchase price. Recurring Costs: There are more expenses involved in owning a condominium than just the purchase price. You need to include the following in your budget:
  • Monthly condominium fees or common expenses
  • Property taxes
  • Unit and contents insurance
  • Mortgage payments
  • Amenity fees, such as storage, pool, extra parking, etc. if not included in the common expenses
  • Utilities (if not included in common expenses)
  • Telephone, cable and Internet access (if not included in common expenses)
  • A contingency for emergency repairs
  • Maintenance costs associated with the upkeep of your unit

Ottawa Condo Checklist

Before a person buys an Ottawa condominium, there are questions that should be answered so that the proper decision could be made. The person needs to ask about the location of the condominium, the amenities, the condominium rules and regulations, affordability, the building, the condominium corporation, and the community and lifestyle.

  • Is the condominium in the neighbourhood I want?
  • Is there a school nearby?
  • Is it accessible by public transit?
  • Is the commute time to work acceptable?
  • Is it close to amenities (e.g. shops, theatres, restaurants, etc.)?
  • Does the condominium have recreational facilities?
  • Does it have an exercise room?
  • Does it have a pool?
  • Does it have a party room?
  • Does it have a convenience store?
  • Does it have a children's area?
  • Does it have parking available?
  • Indoor or outdoor?
  • Guest parking?
  • Does it have suitable storage available?
Condominium Rules and Regulations
  • Are the condominium rules and restrictions clearly defined and understandable?
  • Are the condominium rules and regulations reasonable (can I live under these rules)?
  • Are there rules about the numbers of occupants permitted?
  • Can I rent out my unit?
  • Does the Board of Directors (or developer) seem helpful in explaining the rules?
  • Can I operate my business from the condominium?
  • Can I take my pet?
  • Does the management fit my lifestyle (property manager vs. self-managed)?
  • Is the purchase price of the condominium within my budget?
  • Can I afford the monthly condominium fees along with my mortgage payments, taxes, insurance and other expenses?
  • Does the price seem reasonable for what I am getting?
  • Are there upgrades available that I need or want and how much would they cost?
  • Are finishes included in the purchase price?
  • Is cable/satellite and/or Internet access included in the monthly condominium fees, and if not, how much would they cost?
  • How is the condominium heated/cooled/ventilated?
  • Is the building energy and water efficient?
  • Are utilities included in the monthly condominium fees, and if not, how much can I expect to spend each month?
The Building
  • Is the condominium (e.g. high-rise, low-rise, townhouse, freehold, loft) the type that I want?
  • Will the construction be finished on time and if not, can I wait?
  • Is the building attractive?
  • Is the condominium in good physical condition? Does it seem well built (or well maintained)?
  • Will the condominium be durable?
  • Are the grounds attractive and well maintained? Is the unit attractive?
  • Is it the right size?
  • Does it have the features (e.g. fireplace, number of bedrooms, balcony) I want?
  • Does it have enough storage space?
  • Does it have enough light?
  • Does it have fire protection systems (e.g. smoke detectors, sprinklers)?
  • Does everyone in the family like it?
The Condominium Corporation
  • Is the condominium corporation in good financial condition?
  • Is all documentation for the condominium accessible and in good order?
  • Are there any legal claims or judgements against the condominium corporation?
Community and Lifestyle
  • Does the condominium community seem to match my lifestyle (e.g. older adults vs. families with small children)?
  • Is the condominium strictly residential, or is it mixed-use?
  • What is the proportion of owner-occupied to rented units?
  • Is it accessible for people with special needs?
  • Do the current occupants seem friendly and happy?
  • Are there any noise implications?
  • Roadways, neighbours, garbage chutes and elevators

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