Extra care needed when purchasing apartments

Tuesday 18 December 2012

It seems more and more first-home buyers are choosing to purchase apartments, and that’s hardly surprising.

By The Landlord

Especially in Auckland, where a house in the inner-city suburbs would be likely cost about $1 million, the appeal of an apartment is obvious.

They’re usually in good, central locations, are far cheaper than standalone houses and are often new enough to require little maintenance.

If you have $350,000 to spend in Auckland and want to live close to the city, apartments or units are probably your only option.

There have been some substantial price rises reported over recent years so apartments are becoming a more viable stepping stone for young people wanting to get on to the property ladder.

For the first time in a long time, we are seeing real capital growth in the sector.

They are also a good option for investors keen on cash flow.

But there are some issues with apartments that first-home buyers in particular need to be wary of.

Buyers who are new to the property market need to be fully briefed about the extra things that should be checked when they are considering purchasing in a multi-unit property.

Aside from the issue of apartment buildings with weathertightness problems and the concerns about ground rent for leasehold properties, some body corporates are embroiled in disagreements that new owners may not be aware of if they don’t look carefully at the minutes of the meetings.

There will be rules about the cost of common area maintenance, and how that cost is distributed among the building’s owners  that buyers should fully appraise themselves of.

Apartments are a great solution for first-home buyers wanting  a city lifestyle without the city price tag. But they do require a bit more homework before signing on the dotted line.

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