U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Virginia > Northern Virginia
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 09-06-2009, 09:48 PM
 
Location: Richmond va
1,570 posts, read 4,408,614 times
Reputation: 665

Advertisements

Hey, The company I am moving into the Nova area with is setting me up with a realtor on Wednesday to look at rentals. After speaking with her she says she is going to show me condo rentals. I have been looking online at various apartment complexes and told her I hadnt thought about a condo. She said you typically get more for your money with a condo especially in my price range ($850-$1000). Has anyone else heard that too? Anyone rent a condo? Any opinions or advice would be great! I was just curious. Thanks!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 09-06-2009, 10:02 PM
 
8,647 posts, read 20,020,356 times
Reputation: 3518
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teebyrd86 View Post
Hey, The company I am moving into the Nova area with is setting me up with a realtor on Wednesday to look at rentals. After speaking with her she says she is going to show me condo rentals. I have been looking online at various apartment complexes and told her I hadnt thought about a condo. She said you typically get more for your money with a condo especially in my price range ($850-$1000). Has anyone else heard that too? Anyone rent a condo? Any opinions or advice would be great! I was just curious. Thanks!
I'm currently renting a condo and I find the biggest difference to be the customer service. Since the majority of residents are owners, the staff has a vested interest in being friendly and responsive compared to many apartment complex staff I have dealt with. Perhaps most important to you, is that a condo owner's preferred profit margin is smaller than that of a corporate complex.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-06-2009, 10:13 PM
 
Location: Falls Church, VA
722 posts, read 1,895,297 times
Reputation: 316
Well, she has a vested interest in telling you that condos are better, because Realtors don't get paid to list apartments

That said, it certainly could be true - probably depends on the area and the particular units you're considering. I've actually had the opposite experience as Tone509 - I've found that apartment complexes are more responsive to maintainence requests because they already have the guys on site and on the payroll. Private owners have to call someone in specially for you, and often times they drag their feet because they don't want to pay. Or they try and fix it themselves and have no idea what the hell they're doing.

Plus, with an apartment complex you can at least get an idea of how things are run from sites like apartmentratings.com, while with a private owner you just have to hope they're on top of things.

But I've never lived in a truly bad apartment complex, and certainly almost any condo is going to be better than a bad apartment complex - which will probably have roaches and crime in addition to shoddy maintainence.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-06-2009, 10:22 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, NC, formerly NoVA and Phila
9,622 posts, read 14,885,887 times
Reputation: 10461
I guess you might do better price-wise with a private owner. I know I did. In 1998 I was paying $800 for a 1-bedroom condo in downtown Bethesda. It was a few hundred dollars below the going rate at the time. The owner was living abroad and I guess he didn't realize he could get more for the unit, although he did go through a realtor. Anyway, I had a great deal going! Then I got married and moved to Northern Virginia.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-07-2009, 07:20 AM
 
246 posts, read 565,465 times
Reputation: 101
Places that are built to be condos are generally nicer (bigger kitchens, etc.) than places built to be apartments. This does not always mean that the condos are nicer because often the market will change during development and the building will change use before completion.

Additionally, there tends to be a discount for condo rentals because they do not attract as many potential renters. Apartments can advertise the entire building, which brings in a lot more demand than a single real estate (or craigslist) listing for a condo.

The property in a condo building is usually kept up on a daily basis more than an apartment building. Owners have a much bigger interest in keep-up than renters, who are basically just service users. Thus, if there are any problems, they will often fix them themselves or figure out how to get them fixed. Their own property value depends on it.

I have lived in apartments and condos (currently owning) in this area for 13 years, as have many of my friends. Generally, I would say that condos are a better deal. This is especially true if you plan to stay for a few years as apartment buildings tend to raise rents much faster than individual owners. t

However, in the end, it is situation-specific. Apartment buildings are running a business to get as much money from you as possible. They may be doing a good job, and they may not be (I have lived in wonderful and terrible - albeit the wonderful were a bit pricier than you are considering). Condo owners are individuals, who are of course trying to make money (or at least cover their costs), but they are individuals who are trying to figure it out by applying their own skills and personalities. It may take a bit more effort to find the right condo, but if you do, it will probably pay off.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-07-2009, 08:29 AM
 
5,390 posts, read 6,901,245 times
Reputation: 2854
Price-wise, you could do better with renting a condo. As for other aspects -you'll be dealing with the individual owner, which may or may not work out better than dealing with an apartment management company (unless the condo owner is using a management company, too). Then it's up to the personality. Repairs, complaints, etc, may not be handled as well as an apartment.

In the mid-1990s, I was renting a studio condo in Kalorama (very nice part of DC) for $650 month! The owner had gotten married, her condo was paid off, and all she really cared about was covering the condo fee and having a little side income.

I now own a condo myself, and I charge my tenant a very reasonable rent because he's great and I'd prefer having him than deal with the uncertainties of a new tenant (or going without one for a while). I don't think apartments with lots of units have this flexibility due to these personal considerations.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-07-2009, 09:15 AM
 
Location: Sterling, VA
1,059 posts, read 2,834,341 times
Reputation: 633
[quote=athousandlogins;10641267]Well, she has a vested interest in telling you that condos are better, because Realtors don't get paid to list apartments


No, but they get paid when they bring a tenant whether a condo or an apartment, usually 25 to 50% of the first months rent (not exactly a major source of income).
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-07-2009, 09:29 AM
 
Location: Richmond va
1,570 posts, read 4,408,614 times
Reputation: 665
Thanks! I am so excited to see these places Wednesday! Wonder if there is any negotating the rent (kind of like when you buy a house?)
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-07-2009, 09:33 AM
 
1,261 posts, read 5,918,719 times
Reputation: 563
We have rented out our condo in Arlington for 7 years and our tenants have stayed 2+ years. I can tell you that it may be true that you get more for your money because many condo owners market the condo below the going rate for apartments to increase the pool of prospective tenants. Good rental history and credit check are a must for us. The PP is correct in stating that most condo complexes are quieter and better maintained than apartment buildings since most residents are owners themselves.

As far as finding out how responsive the owner is to potential problems, you can ask the following:
1) Does the owner live in the area? If not, how will he/she respond to issues that may come up?
2) Ask the landlord how long the previous tenant(s) stayed and if he/she knows the reason for moving out. (Most tenants stay beyond lease term if they are satisfied with the living conditions.) You can also ask to speak with previous tenant(s) as a reference. There should be nothing to hide.
3) Review the terms of your lease very carefully.
4) Ask up front about all potential fees and what utilities are not covered by rent. Many condo associations charge a move-in/move-out fee to all tenants.
5) As soon as you move in, try to check out all the appliances, AC, water faucets, etc. Report any significant issues promptly. If there are minor issues, you should be able to make not of it in a property review form when you move in.

ETA: About negotiating the rent, I would only ask if the condo has been on the market a long time or if the rent is as high or higher than comparables. Like I said, most condos for rent by owner (not those listed with a realtor) are priced below the market value for a reason.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-07-2009, 11:46 AM
 
Location: Denver--->Atlanta--->DC
573 posts, read 2,424,406 times
Reputation: 149
Beware of condos under property management. I thought it wouldn't be a big deal but mine is HORRIBLE. And yes, if the condo has been on the market for awhile you can try negotiating rent. Your realtor would do that for you. I got $50 off a month that way; it's not a lot but it adds up over time.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Settings
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2020 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Virginia > Northern Virginia
Similar Threads

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2023, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top