Renting a condo isn’t too different from renting an apartment, but there are other considerations to make. For one, you’re dealing with a different sort of tenant/landlord situation, and secondly, the two are in different ballparks price-wise. However, aside from that, renting a condo is like renting a nice apartment.
There would be completely different considerations to make if you were buying a condo, however. For many, buying a condo simply doesn’t make much sense. If you can afford it, renting a condo is a great investment to make for your future as it nets you a good location from which to work and live. But just like any other property, finding a condo that will fit you and your necessities requires a lot of research and forethought.
Market research is the first thing you’ll want to do. What are prices looking like today? Where is rent currently cheaper? What gets the best transport access to local attractions? Don’t just stick to classical classified ads – branch out into online classifieds and contact realtors directly, asking for a price list of the best available offers and their terms.
Consider the Market Trend
In housing and real estate, it’s a bad idea to try and ride the market trend. However, following the market trend can be a good idea. If you find a condominium with prices on a downturn, you may be able to get a lower rent. Remember, by law, landlords usually can only increase your rent every few months depending on what the law in your area is. In some places, it can take as long as a year.
That way, even if the market recovers and the price of a condo in your building goes up, your rent would stay the same until the condo owner decides to increase it.
Make Sure You Want to Rent
If you’re looking to downsize from a large house into a condo simply because you do not want to deal with the upkeep of a house, then buying a condo may be a more profitable arrangement as you’ll end up spending quite a lot of time there.
But if you’re in your 20s, then even though the cost of a condo doesn’t approach the cost of a serious single-family house, the Globe and Mail points out that you’ll be unlikely to want to stay in the condo for much longer than a few years anyways. It’s smarter to rent when you plan to stay in a condo temporarily – for less than a decade, for example – than if you decide to stay for years and years on end.
Get In-Touch with a Professional
Once you’ve decided you want to go after a condo, it’s best to contact a local realtor and see what they’ve got to say about the market. Even if you don’t plan to use a realtor or real estate company to help you ultimately choose your next residence, getting in touch with a professional and asking for a consultation or for advice can net you what you really need – the necessary insight into the industry to make an informed decision, or at the very least, compile a realistic shortlist.
Remember, renting a condo retains much of the same budgetary conditions as renting an apartment. You’ll have to take into consideration that in the very least, 30 percent of your income after taxes will go to rent – although you could spend more on rent, and cut your costs elsewhere. According to Fortune, most renters in America spend nearly half their income on their rent. While the same might not carry over into Thailand, keeping a concrete benchmark is important to keeping your finances in order.
After the monthly rent considerations, you also have to calculate the cost of a security deposit and renter’s fee, as well as any additional costs you’ll have to face, most notably utility costs.
Look For Deals Online
The best place to look for great deals in condominiums nowadays is online. Through a concrete and large directory like DDProperty, renting a condo shouldn’t be hard. The Internet also makes communicating with a landlord and inspecting the property much easier, letting you easily compile a shortlist. Just beware of scams or misleading information.
Ask About Housemates and Pets
If you plan to finance your condo by renting with a number of housemates or roommates, or if you own any pets, you’ll have to ask your landlord for explicit permission. Most condominiums have extremely strict rules when it comes to pets, although some might allow a cat or dog if you pay a pet deposit alongside a security deposit, as insurance in case something happens with your pet.
Some condominiums have no problem with several tenants, although several dependents also means that the risk for delinquency (inability to pay rent) is higher, which is why other landlords might not be too keen on the idea.
Inquire About Amenities
Condominiums often come with some added benefits that apartments, houses, and townhouses cannot boast. Specifically, these benefits are high-end amenities. From quality restaurants to tennis courts, gym facilities and a swimming pool, corporate condominiums will often include these amenities to raise the value of each individual unit – and that’s a plus, if you’re looking for them.
Cutting the costs of transport and even getting a monthly discount on your gym membership may make a condo more attractive than the other options on your shortlist if you’re someone who cannot resist a good workout – alternatively, the same is true if you love to swim, and would go out of your way to get a few laps in every week one way or the other.
Finally, as in any real estate niche, it’s important to learn to compromise. Use your financial reasoning rather than your emotional reasoning when making decisions about renting a condo. While an ocean front condo would be very nice, getting a unit a few blocks from the coast and away from the city center would save you a lot of money, and still get you a nice view. In the end, as long you do your due diligence and complete your research, you’ll find the right place for you.