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Old 11-20-2010, 11:24 PM
 
264 posts, read 690,083 times
Reputation: 151

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i just recently received a job offer to work in downtown fort lauderdale

ive been searching many properties online and there seems to be so many options available for me but i was hoping someone local to the area could help me out with this.

first of all i am male, single, lower 20s, and just starting my career, salary is $60k
i am very open to location if the property is well kept and within 30 minutes of downtown. my preference though would be oceanfront/highrise (or intracoastal at least).

my plan is to buy a condo with a small downpayment and a mortgage of no larger than $1500.

i am not familiar with buying property and everything it entails, i.e. average interest, buying foreclosed property, fees, first-time incentives, and HOAs/insurance, etc

i am doing more research as we speak but it will be a great help if anyone is willing to share information and help me find the best options for me in fort lauderdale. so far i am liking Las Olas Place downtown, i think i saw a 1/1 in my price range

my career is professional and i look forward to meeting other young professionals, i plan on getting involved with recreational watercrafts, and experiencing everything the area has to offer. i get along with most people and really will just be working 70% of time, 20% exploring the city, and 10% partying.
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Old 11-20-2010, 11:26 PM
 
264 posts, read 690,083 times
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that pretty much sums me up, but i will be checking back here frequently to update and discuss

thanks

Last edited by cfo.evo; 11-20-2010 at 11:34 PM..
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Old 11-21-2010, 09:08 AM
 
Location: Parkland, FL
416 posts, read 1,555,757 times
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When you are looking at condos online, always make sure to take HOA and property tax into consideration.

I know that building, 350 Las Olas Place, pretty well. Condo fees for a 1/1 hover around $500/month. Estimated property tax for a 1/1 might come in around $4000/year. So, even without your mortgage payment, plan on spending roughly $830 just in HOA and taxes each month.
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Old 11-21-2010, 11:09 AM
 
264 posts, read 690,083 times
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thanks that is great advice i am only somewhat familiar with HOA fees and taxes but i'll definitely be keeping it in mind.

although i think even a $2000 mortgage payment including fees is affordable, i dont think it will be reasonable for me at this point. maybe my first year (or at least 6 months) i should consider a smaller apartment i.e. $800/month and save more for a down payment on a condo the following year.

this way i would be more familiar with the area, meet potential roommates, or even a nice lady friend

ahh decisions decisions, any advice is appreciated
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Old 11-21-2010, 02:02 PM
 
Location: Parkland, FL
416 posts, read 1,555,757 times
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My best advice is to first rent a condo in the building that you are interested in. If you are interested in 350 Las Olas, I'd rent there for a year, then consider buying a unit there.

Even though a lot of these buildings are nice on the outside, most are in horrendous shape financially. Look at the HOA finances before buying. Most buildings in downtown have little to no reserve fund set up. If the building needs a new roof, insurance premiums go up, or a rash of foreclosures hit the building, you will be the one footing the bill.

Buying a condo is very risky in this market..
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Old 11-22-2010, 09:27 AM
 
Location: FL
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It is always best to rent first when you don't know the area.
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Old 11-22-2010, 11:56 PM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
621 posts, read 1,522,481 times
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Check out The Tides at Bridgeside Square.. I owned my unit in there for a year and rented it out for a year afterwards (then sold it when we moved..) It's a great building, great amenities.. right off of A1A and Oakland Park Blvd.. Ocean or Intracoastal views, depending on what side you want.. close to downtown but away from it, too.. which is great when you consider traffic, crowds, etc. Its a nice, quiet and newer building.. I survived Wilma there! The address is 3020 NE 32nd Ave, 33308.

And it's pet friendly.. not sure if that's an issue for you.. I absolutely LOVED living there.. good luck!
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Old 11-25-2010, 09:59 AM
 
3,912 posts, read 8,520,378 times
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cfo>

I would recommend renting your first year in Las Olas Place or somewhere comparable. You'll then have 1 year to familiarize yourself with Fort Lauderdale and save some extra dough. Then a year from now you'll be able to make a more informed decision on where to buy.

For buying, one area I'd strongly recommend is Lauderdale By The Seas. It is a small town/village with lots of nice beach condos where prices are more affordable than the city of Fort Lauderdale. You may also want to consider Pompano Beach which is the next city north.

For renting, I'd say just live in Las Olas. It is the best area for young professionals and you make enough money to afford the rent it looks like. There are a ton of places to go out for nightlife that you can walk to from your building.
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Old 12-03-2010, 07:28 PM
 
264 posts, read 690,083 times
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thanks everyone, i am definitely happy to see that there are several options for me to consider, and i would definitely rent first before buying. does anyone know about las olas by the river condos? seems to be a steal....
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Old 12-03-2010, 07:43 PM
 
Location: Florida -
9,929 posts, read 12,524,814 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cfo.evo View Post
thanks everyone, i am definitely happy to see that there are several options for me to consider, and i would definitely rent first before buying. does anyone know about las olas by the river condos? seems to be a steal....
A lot of places are probably a 'steal' these days -- not sure about Ft. Lauderdale, but the E. Coast of Florida north of there, where we have an oceanfront condo, is bloated with condo foreclosures. A couple of things to watch out for: (1) HOA fees can fluctuate, particularly when the condo has a number of places going into foreclosure; (2) older condo's, particularly on the water, typically need balcony and/or roof replacements (which often involve 'special assessments); (3) Too many renters in a condo tend to drive prices down and maintenance costs up.

Your best bet might be to look for a 'Lease-Option' at today's prices. This will allow you to build some equity and also protect the price, without the commitment of buying in what may be a further downturn. You might also ask some banks there about their REO's (and willingness to lease-option).

You spoke about buying a 1/1, (a loft?), but may want to consider the resale -- which is better for a 2/2 or larger - which also gives you some room for a home office or other.

Interest rates probably can't get much lower, -- and if you have a strong, stable future earnings potential - you may be in a position to stretch more than you think -- yet, protect yourself financially (for example, you might buy a 2/2, 3/2 and rent out a room to another young professional).
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