Big City Condos

Many Canadians grew up in a detached home. It had a yard and a basement and enough space for their family to live without getting in each other's way. And yet when it comes time for these same people to buy their own homes, many of them are choosing condos instead of detached homes. Why? What's so appealing about condos that they've becomes the most popular type of urban real estate, especially among young professionals and retired people? This article will explore some of the reasons.

One of the biggest factors behind the growth in popularity of condos is that they bring inner city real estate down into the realm of affordability for the average person. Populations are up, available living space is limited, which pushes detached real estate in the city centre into the millions of dollars. Most of us, especially if we're retired or just starting out, don't have that kind of money but need the convenience of easy downtown access. The condo provides us with an affordable compromise.

Another reason that condos have become so popular is that it largely frees the home owner from the strain of household maintenance. Sure the interior is the responsibility of the condo owner, but there's no driveway to shovel, no roof to maintain, no lawn to mow. Any necessary building maintenance is taken care of by the monthly condo fee, which pays the salaries of maintenance staff. This is especially important for people who work long hours and have no time for household chores or older people who are no longer physically capable.

Easy access to amenities provides more evidence of condo appeal. Condo complexes in the city often compete with one another to see who can provide the most services. A parking garage, laundry service, movie theater, rooftop entertaining space, gym, concierge, and swimming pool are now almost the standard. Add to that the easy commuting distance to such things as workplaces, public transit, grocery stores, bars, clubs, and concert venues and condo dwellers rarely need to leave their own neighbourhood to get what they want or need.

And finally, there's the lure of ownership. Prior to the introduction of purchasable flats to North America (they have long been common in Europe) singles and couples who only needed or wanted a small amount of living space were forced to rent apartments. Condo ownership allows them to build equity rather than throwing their money away on rent.

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