The Area Manager is the main point of contact throughout your entire home buying process. He or she can help you decide whether a particular neighbourhood is the right one for you and how to select a condo that meets your needs. They're also there to answer any questions you have along the way - and here are a few to help get you started.
1. What Is the Process for Purchasing a Condo?
This might seem like a very basic question but the actual home buying process can vary slightly from builder to builder. The answer will tell you how long it will take before you can move into your new home, when you need to sign papers, how long you'll have to save for your down payment, whether or not you should use the developer's preferred lender and what to expect after the sale.
2. What Kinds of Choices Can I Make?
Your Area Manager will help you understand what choices are available to you based on what you're looking for. For instance, if you're looking to have a roommate, they'll be able to help you choose a floorplan best suited for this scenario. They'll also be able to tell you what features and finishes you'll be able to pick (varies by development), how to choose the right unit in the best location and much more.
3. Which Features Come Standard? Which Are Upgrades?
Everyone wants to blend style with affordability. While a development might start in the low $300s, you may pay closer to $400,000 if you opt for most of the available upgrades. You need to get a realistic estimate of cost. As you tour show suites, ask the Area Manager whether you're seeing standard features or upgrades. Keep in mind, a quality developer will often include premium features (such as quartz countertops or designer lighting packages) as standard, so be sure to ask.
4. Which Floor Plans Are the Most Popular and Why?
Different floor plans appeal to different lifestyles and number of people living in the home. Some buyers are looking for extra space while others are looking for a balcony or a big island in the kitchen. Learning more about which floor plans are popular and why can help you make the best decision. Keep in mind, sticking with some of the more popular options (two or more bedrooms, open floor plan, master ensuite, etc.) can mean better condo resale value.
5. Are There Additional Fees I Should Consider?
As you build your new home, you’re naturally focused on the overall cost and how much your monthly payments will be. However, you also need to consider closing costs as well as other additional expenses. For example, many Calgary condo developments require you to pay condo fees to help cover the costs of maintenance around the shared parts of the properties. While condo fees are affordable, you'll want to factor in these costs ahead of time.
6. What Amenities Are Nearby?
If you’re not already familiar with the neighbourhood, the Area Manager can help you get your bearings. He or she can tell you about popular shopping centres, the best restaurants, the closest grocery stores and other amenities in the community. You can also find out if there's nearby public transportation, a dog park, or a gym that offers a variety of classes. Learning about these amenities can help you decide if a neighbourhood is right for you.
7. Additional Questions Based on Your Unique Needs
It’s also important to ask any questions that are particular to your lifestyle. For instance, if you're an animal lover, you'll want to know if the development you're interested in has any rules regarding pets. If you own several vehicles, you'll want to know if there are restrictions related to parking. These little things can make a big difference in whether or not you choose a particular community, so don’t be afraid to ask.
As you purchase your new home, the Area Manager can offer you the help you need to make important decisions. Develop a good relationship with this person and you’ll feel more empowered to make the right choices for your needs.