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Old 08-24-2017, 04:05 PM
 
Location: VT; previously MD & NJ
2,229 posts, read 1,360,218 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theoldnorthstate View Post
Hello

For those of you retirees who live in an apartment or condo, how is that going for you?

Am currently in a SFR but will be selling out and moving near family. I would like to go the apartment or condo route but not sure I can pull it off practically speaking. And I am used to my own house.

It is all tradeoffs and dollars, so I just wonder how you all have done with it at this point.
The thing to look for is a unit that has it's own door to the outside, and a patio or balcony so you have a place to sit outside on nice days, and laundry in your unit. Look for parking close to your door. If you go with a building with long hallways and elevators, it will feel much more constrained.

Before buying a condo, be sure to get the rules and regulations, AND READ THEM. Be sure you can live with the rules. Talk to residents to find out about things like noise, whether dog owners pick up after their pets. Look at the cars in the parking lot... too many old beaters and you might not like your neighbors.
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Old 08-24-2017, 04:22 PM
 
8,221 posts, read 11,935,652 times
Reputation: 18079
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cabound1 View Post
I have 2 90 lb German shepherds, and have found that only rundown places in less desirable areas will accept big dogs, both for renting and owning.
That's not necessarily true. I own a relatively new, luxury oceanfront condo in a prime location on Miami Beach and we allow two dogs of any size. Now admittedly, most condos in the area only allow small dogs (<25lbs), but there are exceptions and it has nothing to do with whether a property is rundown and/or in a less desirable area.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkalot View Post
Sure you get the lawn done and join a gym for less. What about when you need a roof or driveway? My condo fee covers pest control, water, sewer, trash, insurance. How much a month for that in a house? Average outside maintenance can add up. Anti condo people always think they can piece it together cheaper. They can't.
Mine also includes cable tv, wifi Internet, valet, doorman, 24hr concierge, and more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkalot View Post
Condos aren't for everyone. I wish those people would quit buying them.
Agreed.
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Old 08-24-2017, 04:36 PM
 
Location: NE Mississippi
13,721 posts, read 8,612,921 times
Reputation: 19980
Single family house? Condo?

What about a blend - a town house? We own a pair of town houses - that's with 2 different titles and a brick wall separating the units. Each town house has its own courtyard and since there are only the 2 there is no HOA. We rent them both out, for now.

We still live in the 3-2-2, but will probably downsize to the town house at some point. We could do that easily, because our town houses have the master suite downstairs. Upstairs would just be a spare bedroom and maybe a theater for games and movies.
I'm a still active 72 year old and I don't think I could live in a condo - at least not as long as I am married. If I were single maybe it would be different.

BTW: Because we have owned the town houses for over 30 years and they have never been sold, the city still has them on the tax rolls at a ridiculously low value. With our senior discount and homestead exemption our property taxes would go to zero. Nada.
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Old 08-24-2017, 08:31 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,134 posts, read 23,045,598 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cabound1 View Post
This is kind of the why I feel too. But owning a home back in snow country is a lot more involved than owning here in SF Bay Area. A lot more maintenance with the snow, ice and freezing temps.
Amen! I lived in snow and ice for a total of about 20 years. Moved from the SF Bay Area, to WA state, to TN, back to WA to CA.

Dealing with snow and ice is no joke. And something that also needs to be taken into consideration regarding where to live in retirement.
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Old 08-25-2017, 06:11 AM
 
7,823 posts, read 4,409,856 times
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I think I'd love condo living (depending on the noisiness of the neighbors, that is), but paying those HOA fees would kill me! I consider them a rip-off in almost every case. Yes, it'd be nice having a pool to swim in and not having a lawn to mow, but - really - they're way higher than they need to be in almost every case. I'm trying to decide this about my OWN retirement: direct oceanfront condo or a small SFH set back a few blocks.
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Old 08-25-2017, 08:08 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
4,865 posts, read 4,977,192 times
Reputation: 17368
Quote:
Originally Posted by ansible90 View Post
The thing to look for is a unit that has it's own door to the outside, and a patio or balcony so you have a place to sit outside on nice days, and laundry in your unit. Look for parking close to your door. If you go with a building with long hallways and elevators, it will feel much more constrained.

Before buying a condo, be sure to get the rules and regulations, AND READ THEM. Be sure you can live with the rules. Talk to residents to find out about things like noise, whether dog owners pick up after their pets. Look at the cars in the parking lot... too many old beaters and you might not like your neighbors.
Those are good ideas. My mother in law retired to a condo in Scottsdale. The homes were all built as a duplex. However, they had excellent sound insulation between the units. It was all on one level, everybody had a patio and a garage. In her neighborhood, the rich ones drove new Mercedes and the poor ones leased new Camrys. I don't remember seeing many dogs; perhaps they weren't allowed.
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Old 08-25-2017, 08:30 AM
 
7,823 posts, read 4,409,856 times
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Also look at the financial stability of the organization; they should have plenty of money in the "kitty" without having to increase maintenance fees anytime soon or, worse, make special assessments for repairs. That's the scariest part for me: no control.
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Old 08-25-2017, 09:47 AM
 
15,436 posts, read 4,081,982 times
Reputation: 11135
Quote:
Originally Posted by runswithscissors View Post
So seriously, don't claim my condo is MORE MONEY than your single family house and how you can "do it all" yourself. LOL. Well, unless I guess you cart your own trash to the local dump and don't do anything more than MOW once a month and let your trees get all huge and messed up etc.

Are you roofers? (just for starters).
3 Bed, 3 bath home in Florida on 1/4 acre.
Sarasota picks up ALL trash - included in the sewer and water fee (relatively low) - they will pick up all brush, mattresses and ANYTHING else.

It costs us $60 per month to keep the grass cut. $30 for internet. $60 for the house watcher (and he goes inside - your condo likely doesn't check your place like that).

The house has a flat roof with modified bitumen - it's only 9 feet above the ground, so - yes - I coated it by myself and it is holding fine.

I laid everything out on a spreadsheet and it costs us MUCH less (about 1/2) what most of the condo's in the area do. Plus, I can store my little sailboat on the side, plant a little garden, etc.

We have 12 clay tennis courts 3 blocks away - very low fees (county owned).

Our condo is definitely in a high COL area (Newport, RI).....so, yeah, that's where a lot of the fees go. Labor is about double what it is in Florida....sometimes even more. But while you sit there inside because the "real feel" is 98 degrees, we are basking in the sun at 73 (right now).

There is an arse for every seat....and I own seats of both types. I can deal with each (both types) because I know that in a condo or apt you have to keep in mind that others are close by, etc.
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Old 08-25-2017, 09:57 AM
 
7,823 posts, read 4,409,856 times
Reputation: 11640
I do at times wonder what the number-crunching would look like if I rented an apartment rather than bought a condo...but I've always been one to collect -- not pay -- rent! It would be a shock to the system; not sure I could take it.
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Old 08-25-2017, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Western MA
1,597 posts, read 1,045,710 times
Reputation: 4141
Quote:
Originally Posted by MadManofBethesda View Post
That's not necessarily true. I own a relatively new, luxury oceanfront condo in a prime location on Miami Beach and we allow two dogs of any size. Now admittedly, most condos in the area only allow small dogs (<25lbs), but there are exceptions and it has nothing to do with whether a property is rundown and/or in a less desirable area.



Mine also includes cable tv, wifi Internet, valet, doorman, 24hr concierge, and more.



Agreed.

Here too. Condo community in Nashua, NH. I am in a townhouse, but we also have apartment-style condos in elevator buildings in the community. 2 dogs allowed, no weight or breed restriction.
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