FAQ

A blog category dedicated to common questions I’m asked by Buyers and Sellers and things I think you should know, including maintenance, Stratas, the real estate process, and more.

Kristi Holz FAQs

How to Navigate a Slow Market

Covid-19 is affecting all aspects of our lives including the Real Estate Market. With everyone trying to stay home and self-isolate this past week and likely for a few more weeks, we’re going to see what was a busy, prosperous market slow down significantly, but the expectation is that it will pick up again once we’re on the other side of this pandemic given the pent up demand.

This post is primarily for Buyers looking in a slow market, but if you’re a Seller, you’re still in a good position. There are going to be a lot of Sellers who postpone their listing so there will likely be less competition. If you bought prior to 2018 then you’ve likely made some money on your home and have some wiggle room when it comes to value. The biggest consideration to make is your next step. Are you buying again, and if so, what are you looking for? These details matter when it comes to my advice to you, so if you’re interested in chatting about what is best for you, contact me: 778-387-7371 or kristi@realestatevancity.ca.

I have a lot of clients who want to wait out the next week or to, mostly due to social responsibility but also because they anticipate the market slowing down. Everyone is asking me about timing the market, and when the best time will be to buy. Timing the Market is really, really hard:

  1. I always remember a quote a seasoned agent told me years ago: “How do you know when you’ve hit the bottom of the market? It’s started to go up again”. You won’t know you’re at the bottom until it’s passed you by. If you buy in a slow market, you’re likely buying close to the bottom of the market so you’ll be getting a deal anyways.
  2. You need to actually negotiate with Sellers to find out how low they’re willing to go.
  3. You need a lot of confidence to buy when no one else is willing too. After working through a few slow markets, I can tell you this is harder than it seems.

So, in order to have a chance at timing the market, you need to be active in the market.  By the time most Buyers feel comfortable jumping in after the market slows down, most other Buyers will be thinking the same thing, which is when the competition increases and the market picks up again! So, my advice to you is to stay on top of the market! Your opportunity could be there next week from now, or two months from now, or in the Fall. The more you know about your options, the more prepared you’ll be to take advantage of whatever the market becomes. Keep in mind that we were just dealing with a busy, multiple offer market that started this past Fall and continued up to this week. This pent up demand is still there, and I have no doubt that once the market picks up again we’ll be back in a multiple offer market.

When you’re looking to buy in a slowing market, compare the price of what you’re looking at to the last few months. How does it compare? If it’s a better price than you’ve seen for the last few months? I’m a numbers feen so you can rest assured I’ll be comparing your options and giving you my thoughts.

For Buyers looking to make a move, slow markets are a great time to move UP the ladder. If the market drops 5%, then even if your 1 bedroom condo isn’t worth as much now as it was last month, the townhouse you’re looking to buy dropped a bigger dollar amount, so the price gap has narrowed between your purchase and sale which is really beneficial in making the jump. Slow Markets are also a great time to get into your forever home. The Vancouver Detached Market has always been competitive when it comes to a livable, well maintained home with a suite, so if the opportunity arises to jump into a good house that you’ll presumably be living in for decades, go for it.

I’ve spent quite a bit of time over the last few days reviewing stats and information from the last couple Real Estate Market slow downs: the global 2008 recession, 2016 after the Foreign Buyers Tax was introduced, and the most recent one in 2018-2019. These market slow downs have lasted anywhere from 6 months to just over a year, and in 2008 and 2016 prices surpassed the previous high. We were on pace to do that now after the slow down in 2018, but this pandemic has thrown this wrench into a busy market. So if you were actively considering purchasing a property recently and lost in multiple offer situations, and now the market starts to slow down, why would you stop looking? It just got easier to buy and no one finds a deal if they aren’t looking.

During any market, it’s a personal decision as to when to buy: everyone has to consider their current financial scenario, their career and their short and long term plans. Right now, if you have the job security and have been seriously looking for real estate over the last few months, this is your opportunity to find something with much less competition and some negotiation room. My office – Stilhavn Real Estate – has a list going of “off market” listings (Sellers who are keen to sell but don’t want to list publicly). I’ll be following this list and contacting my Buyers if a colleague of mine has a listing that would work for them.

One final thought I’d like to leave you with – in this slow market and desire to find a deal, don’t forget about finding a property that you actually like and want to live in! As much as real estate is an investment, it’s also going to be your home so make sure it’s somewhere that you feel comfortable as the longer you’re willing to live in it, the more likely you’ll be able to withstand future changes in the market.

As always, Real Estate has an overarching trend, but what the best decision is for you depends on your particular situation. If you want to chat about what’s right for you given the current and future market, contact me: 778-387-7371 or kristi@realestatevancity.ca.

Kristi Holz FAQs

A Quick Overview of Detached House Maintenance and Potential Issues

My favourite sector of Vancouver Real Estate are the houses and we have an interesting selection of styles and construction throughout the city. Most of our housing stock is older which means every Buyer and Home Owner has to be aware of the regular maintenance and upkeep required. When you’re in the process of purchasing a house, you need to remember that home inspections are of utmost importance in ensuring you understand the current quality of the original build (such as the exterior and foundation) as well as the quality of the renovations added over the years (such as the roof, electrical, decks, and basement suites). Below is a quick – and far from extensive – overview of some of the most common maintenance and repair found during an inspection of older houses

A couple details to keep in mind: 

  • I am not a professional home inspector and neither are you – get a certified home inspection! I must state the obvious – this post is not a replacement for specific and professional advice from a home inspector. The home inspector will go through all the details I mention below, and much, much more including maintenance tips.
  • This post is referring to older houses. Houses built in the last few decades have had to follow a specific building code and use different materials, construction and systems. You should still get a home inspection done on a newer house to ensure the work was done well and to code.
  • Houses built during different eras have different inherent defects due to materials used and the style of construction.  Early 1900’s homes may have lead based paint, oil tanks, and knob and tube wiring, whereas 1970s homes may have asbestos. 
  • Older homes are also typically a mix of permitted work and handyman work done at various times and often without much history as to when or why. Ensure you call the City to determine if any of the work was done with permits and get as much history of the house from the Seller as possible.

Roof

Every roof has a life span, so you need to know where yours sits on the spectrum. The house inspector will get on top of your roof to look for signs of issues. What material is the roof? Is there wear and tear, indication of animals or pests, incorrect flashing or gutter issues? Not only can an old roof lead to leaks in your property, but an incorrectly installed gutter or flashing can lead to moisture damage. Are the gutters cleaned or blocked? Does the attic have adequate ventilation? Is the chimney structurally sound? 

Exterior

The exterior of every home and garage is so important, and there are quite a few things to consider: 

Does the house have proper drainage with a drain tile system, and if so, how old is the current system? Does the property slope away from the house? Is there vegetation or potential roots touching the house? Do the gutters drain away from the house? 

How does the current exterior look and what product is it made from? Is the paint missing or peeling? Is the exterior buckling or cracking? Is there any damage from rot, mould, pests or wind? Do the windows look like they have proper and consistent sealant? Is there appropriate flashing? Are the transitions between materials properly sealed? Does the wood trim look like it was recently painted? Is there any cracking on the foundation? Is the house on proper footings? 

Are the retaining walls structurally sound? Do the fences look deteriorated and damaged? 

Are the decks built appropriately? Has the wood been well maintained? Does the deck have any safety concerns with its design and are the railings sturdy? 

Electrical

The electrical work is one of the biggest questions for any potential house owners, only because it can be a big job if it needs to be replaced. Since most of the electrical is not visible to the inspector, try to find out the history of the electrical work from the Seller (and potentially, the City if permits were pulled) since electrical is often done in portions, rather than all at once. What kind of electrical does the house currently have? Was the panel updated and does it overheat? Do plugs near water sources have GFCI breakers?

The potential issues with electrical can be a blog post in its own right, so ensure you understand the type of wiring the home has and how much it could be to update, if needed. 

Heating

There are a variety of heating options in any house, so pose bigger potential maintenance and cost issues that others. Homes generally older then the 1960’s may have had an oil tank installed at one point in time, providing fuel for the furnace. These oil tanks have all been de-commissioned but they can pose a significant and expensive risk to the soil so they need to be removed if discovered. Ensure you do an oil tank scan to verify the existence (or lack thereof) of an oil tank so that the removal can be done by the current Seller. The potential issue with oil tanks is a huge concern and should be dealt with both in the contract and during your due diligence. 

Ensure you understand the type of heating in the house. Keep in mind that it may be different in various parts of the house due to previous additions and renovations. Observe the furnace. When was it installed? How is it powered? Is there any indication of recent maintenance? 

Plumbing

Have a look at the plumbing that is visible in the house. What type of plumbing does the house have and what condition are the pipes (that are visible)? Where are the water shut-offs? Have braided hoses been installed on appliances and fixtures? Observe the hot water system. Is it a tank or on demand system? How old is it? Has it been secured in case of an earthquake? Is it easily accessible? Is there a sump pump? Has the main supply line from the city been replaced? Were any bathrooms added over the years?

Interior

There are so many details in the interior to consider. Is there a fireplace? When was the last time is was maintained? Are the windows functional? Do the windows show any signs of age or issue? Is there any indication of mould or dampness in the kitchen or bathrooms? Are the bathrooms caulked appropriately? Is the tile grout in good condition and sealed? Is the laundry hooked up properly with appropriate venting and hoses? Are there any cracks in the walls indicating structural movement? Are the stairs to code? Is there a crawlspace or access to the attic? Is there any evidence of rodent activity in the attic? Is the attic insulation in good condition? Does the attic have good ventilatioN?

The chance to own a house is a blessing, but make sure you have as good an understanding of the house as possible so you can be prepared for the regular and potential maintenance you’ll need to do to keep the house in good shape. Be prepared to do regular reviews of your home to ensure you’re staying on top of maintenance (consider getting another home inspection does if it’s been a few years and you’ve done a few upgrades since you bought). You can create a yearly check-list so nothing gets missed. Ask your realtor for recommendations on service providers and solutions for odd issues. As with any purchase, ensure you have some money set aside for unexpected issues – they can be costly for a house, but it’s worth it!

Kristi Holz FAQs

What is a Rainscreen?

A rainscreen is an exterior wall system that helps to keep buildings dry. In simple terms, a rainscreen is the space between the exterior wall of a building and the interior wall of a building (also called an air cavity) that allows for rainwater and condensation to escape before seeping into the interior wall of a building, thus avoiding moisture and mould problems inside units.

As of the year 2000 (give or take), rainscreened exteriors are required as per the BC Building Code. The design of rain screen systems and the quality of materials used has improved over the years as well.

Buildings built without a rain screen system will likely need need to install a rain screen when the exterior is eventually updated. This process can happen in stages (i.e. wall by wall) or it can happen all at one time, often including new windows, balconies, doors, etc so the entire exterior system can be tied in together. Keep in mind, many buildings experience water ingress and mould through windows so updating windows is a major aspect of ensuring the building has an airtight seal. A full rainscreen is a very expensive project, but it adds a lot of value to buildings once completed.

BEFORE A RAINSCREEN – This photo shows a 1970’s building with its original painted wood siding, original windows and original balconies.
AFTER A RAINSCREEN – This photos shows the same building after a full rainscreen, including a mix of wood, composite and metal siding, new balconies, new windows, new doors, new patios and membrane on the south side, new fencing and new concrete stairs. This was an extensive rainscreen project and cost 1 bedroom owners in the building ~$70,000 each.

In my research and review of many different strata documents and Engineer’s Report, I find many rainscreen projects are instigated when a building begins to review their balconies. Upon the Engineer’s Review, it is often determined that there is more rot than originally thought, which leads to further review and the need to do a much more all encompassing project to deal with moisture damage.

A full rainscreen project can take a long time to come to fruition. Initially, the Strata needs to procure an Engineer’s Report, which can take months to have done. Once this Engineer’s Report is received and reviewed, the Strata often needs to gather more information, including further professional opinions as well as a potential schedule and cost. Once this information has been gathered, the Strata needs to vote on the next steps at an official AGM or SGM Meeting. If the project is approved, the Strata will likely require the funds to be paid in instalments, and the work can’t often start until the Strata has enough funds to pay for the Engineering company the deposit to start the project Once the project gets going, the Engineering company will create a plan and pursue city permits for the work. Once approved, the actual work can start, which means the exterior ground level will be cleared and the scaffolding will go up and the existing exterior will be removed. The scaffolding will likely be up for 6-15 months, depending on the scope of the project. Once the exterior is done and the scaffolding comes down, there is often work to install new fencing and new landscaping, since it’s often destroyed during construction.

Rainscreen projects are very expensive for Owners, and they can be a very long process, but it’s always worth it in the end. Not only do you reclaim the value of the project if you need to sell, but you can enjoy living with a modern, worry free exterior. One issue to be aware of is once the project is announced to be in consideration, it makes the building a tough sell to potential Buyers. Not only is it harder to get financing for a mortgage (that is, until the project is done), but Buyers are weary of buying into a building where they will have to live through the work. It’s in your best interest to wait until the project is done in order to sell, if you can afford to do so.

This is a building that has a partial rainscreen. The right side of the photo shows the original exterior stucco, whereas the left side shows the new stucco clad rainscreen.
Kristi Holz FAQs

What you need to know about AirBnb and Strata Bylaws

NOTE: This column is not a substitute for professional legal advice when it comes to short term rentals. Please speak with a Lawyer to discuss your particular situation and options. Keep in mind all condo buildings and the Government can change existing policy at any time.

Over the last few years I have had a few clients interested in pursuing AirBnB style investment properties, so I have done a lot of research into their options and the wording of Strata rental bylaws. As I mentioned above, I’m not a lawyer so get appropriate legal advice if this is important to you, but here are a few things I’ve learned from the research I’ve done:

(1) The City of Vancouver requires that anyone looking to rent their unit for less than 1 month (on AirBnB or any other site) must satisfy the following (including, but not limited to) criteria:

(2) Short Term Rentals like AirBnB are considered “licenses” rather than “leases”. Many Strata Bylaws allow Owners to enter into a “lease” for the use of their Strata Lot, but do not allow Owners to enter into a “license” for use of their Strata Lot. This wording would be very important in a legal battle involving an Owner vs Strata, so review your Bylaws in detail. Again, I am not a Lawyer, but here is a general definition of the terminology. Consult your Lawyer regarding any legalities.

  • It’s a “license” when the Owner gives someone permission to use the space temporarily for a specific reason. As you can imagine, there is no BC Tenancy Agreement in place, but often, though not required, there is a written License Agreement between the two parties.
  • It’s a “lease” when there is an agreement in place giving the tenant exclusive possession of the property, often via a BC Tenancy Agreement. Keep in mind, even if a BC Tenancy Agreement was not signed, certain situations may still legally be considered a standard Tenancy.

(3) There is a particular issue to be aware of when it comes to roommates or renting out extra rooms. A couple things to keep in mind:

  • Some Strata Bylaws indicate that Owners cannot rent out “less than all of the unit”, which means you cannot rent out an extra room to a roommate. Bylaws often specify a certain length of time that someone is considered a “guest” so look for a Bylaw indicating this time period to determine if someone staying with you would be considered a renter or licensee (distinction would depend on your agreement with them).
  • If you are renting out a room on a license basis, ensure it is allowed as per your Strata bylaws, even if you are still living in the property during the rental period.
  • If you are renting out a room with a standard Tenancy Agreement in place, then technically this constitutes a rental as per Strata Bylaws, which means you should follow your building’s rental bylaws, including, but not limited to: submitting a Form K to the Strata, ensuring your Tenant knows the Bylaws and Rules, applying for permission to rent and following any rental bylaws regarding total number allowed by the Strata and minimum lease lengths.

(4) Review the Strata Minutes (going as far back as possible) to see if there is any discussion of short term rentals, standard rentals, bylaw wording, and fines for Owners not following the bylaws. If the building mentions that they have previously fined Owners for not following rental bylaws properly then you’ll want to tread carefully. Keep in mind new Strata Council members might have a certain desire to enforce these Bylaws even if previous Councils turned a blind eye. Strata Councils are technically required by the Strata Property Act to enforce Bylaws as written.

(5) I don’t own investment properties, nor do I rent my own home out on AirBnB, so I can’t speak for experience, but I have recently seen properties listed for sale that rent on AirBnB despite not satisfying the City of Vancouver Short Term Rental / AirBnB policy. I don’t know how these people are circumventing the rules, but I imagine it’s both the City (and in some cases, the Strata) not performing enough random audits to ensure people are following the rules.

In short, I say this to all of my clients looking for buildings that allow AirBnB: even if a building allows short term rentals right now, that Bylaw can change, along with Government policy, so your intention and investment planning should be to rent the unit on a long term basis with a standard BC Tenancy Agreement.

Here are a few sites to offer more information on the topics above:

Kristi Holz Market Update

Covid-19 and the Vancouver Real Estate Market

Oi vey. 

What a week. What a year. Obviously, Covid-19 has had a dramatic affect on how we all interact and changes in normal protocol seem to be finally hitting the Vancouver Real Estate Market. This blog features my own thoughts and insights from those in my circle during this strange time. In addition to conversations with my contacts in the financial world, I’ve been studying real estate stats and the recession in 2008 for some insight into what might happen over the next few months.

Though most units are still receiving significant interest and multiple offers, Agents are starting to have discussions with their Buyers and Sellers as to their short term plans. As with everything during this pandemic, we are re-evaluating plans on a daily basis. This scenario is unprecedented – I find people are reacting in a way similar to a decline in the market. Some fear the worst and want to act immediately, while others would rather wait it out. If you were looking to make a move before this situation hit, what you should do is your decision. Life will return to some semblance of normal, so it’s a matter your personal and financial position, as well as how long you want to wait to make a move.

Here are a few thoughts: 

  • The general consensus is for everyone to self quarantine as much as possible over the next 2 to 3 weeks to stop the spread of the virus, so I expect the next few months to be slower than normal.
  • Although no one knows what will happen in the future, the turnaround in Asia is a positive development for everyone, as well as the news reports that a variety of vaccines are in development and that Canada and the US are taking this situation very seriously.
  • The economy has been through similar drops in recent decades and history has shown that recovery, if not a stronger economy, will happen in time. The Government has done a great job thus far of supporting individuals and businesses, and we are lucky to live in a strong economy that will weather the storm. There will be hardship, especially if society is all but shutdown for a few weeks, but we have recovered from similar scenarios in the past. Certain industries will be more affected than others, but as the recession in 2008 proves, we will steadily recover.
  • In order to stimulate the economy, our Government and the Bank of Canada will likely keep interest rates on the lower end of the scale for the time being. I wouldn’t be surprised to see some changes in the rate, but it should stay fairly low. I can’t see the Government making any negative changes to policies (as in, changing any policies to make it harder to purchase property) anytime soon. If anything, there’s a chance they will relax lending policies to help folks recover quicker, but I wouldn’t rely on it.
  • There was a lot of pent up demand for Real Estate this year after the recent slow market that saw a lot of Buyers take the “wait and see” approach, and this pandemic will likely increase the amount of future pent up demand as Buyers do it again. Housing is such an important part of everyone’s life, and Real Estate is an investment into yourself, so even if things do slow down for a few months, it never stays down. Buyers will adjust their ideal price range, but the market will keep moving, albeit, slower.
  • There are going to be Sellers who continue with their plans to sell in order to take advantage of the current competitive Buyer activity while it’s still happening. I would imagine if this coming weekend’s open houses are abnormally slow, some Sellers will pull their listings and wait until things improve. Those who are really keen to sell will keep their listing up.
  • There are also Sellers out there who need to sell. Perhaps they just bought their next place, and have to sell in order to complete their next purchase, perhaps they have an investment property and want an influx of money given other losses, perhaps they’ve lost their job and need to re-configure their finances and perhaps they’re the doomsday type that feel it’s better to sell now, regardless of the situation, than to wait until things return to normal.
  • Properties have been getting multiple offers, so there are still a lot of Buyers looking to make some moves and I can’t imagine everyone will step back for the next couple of weeks. Some Buyers view these uncertain scenarios as an opportunity to take advantage of a slow weekend, especially since just about everything this year has gone into multiple offers. If a Buyer has been looking for a particular property for awhile now, and it finally hits the market, those Buyers will likely pursue it. 
  • As for prices.… the drop in the stock market will affect high net worth individuals the most, so we may see a decline in the upper end of the market. These individuals may re-focus their energy on investment properties, which is often seen as a more stable long term investment compared to the stock market. However, the focus of any investor will be specific to homes that can be rented so anything that allows rentals will have a lot more interest than buildings that do not allow rentals. First Time Buyers are always the most nervous about buying, and they have the ability to stall the market (if they don’t buy the 1 bedrooms, then the people who own 1 bedrooms can’t buy the 2 bedrooms, and those 2 bedroom owners can’t move up, etc) so once this pandemic proves to be on the upswing, I think we’ll see the market pick up again. This lack of activity will likely lead to some minor prices decreases and an overall stalling of the market – BUT – if you happen to be looking to buy a good unit in the most active Vancouver markets (the entry level detached market, entry level two bedroom, or rentable 1 bed condo market) then I would expect the activity to remain fairly steady. These units were often getting 5+, 10+, 20+ offers recently, so there are still a lot of Buyers out there even if many choose to step away from their search for the time being. I believe we’ll be in a strong, active market once this passes, so it’s a good time to take advantage of the opportunities now. Remember, if you’re buying a home to live in for 3+ years, you’ll ride out any short term changes in the market.
  • Some people are postponing listings and their searches until there is more certainty and confidence in the health of our community. For obvious reasons, this applies to those who are ill, immunocompromised or older, in addition to people who aren’t comfortable knowing who they are interacting with during viewings.
  • I’m hearing a lot of Agents talk about cancelling Open Houses and only allowing private showings. This will help to ensure some distance between Buyers as well as the chance to sanitize appropriately. UPDATE: The Real Estate Board will not be allowing Open Houses after the weekend of March 21/22nd though private showings are allowed.
  • I’ve had a few Buyers postpone their search for the time being mostly due to social responsibility, but a couple have cited declines in their investment portfolio (and thus down payment) and wanting to wait to see what happens. Similar to any slow market (which we just went through in 2019) a lot of Buyers step out of the market for fear of what might happen, only to miss the opportunities and realize this when the market picks up again. If you’re buying a unit to live in for the next 3+ years, you’ll ride out any short term market changes. Here’s my post about How to Navigate a Slow Market.
  • Overall, I don’t anticipate any major and long lasting, changes to the Real Estate Market. I bet that we’ll see strong activity in the market in the late Spring, throughout the Summer and into Fall (without the typical Summer slow down) to account for a few slower weeks now while everyone is trying to “stay the F home”. 

The Real Estate Board has released statements to Realtors indicating that it is the decision of us and our clients as to continue, adapt or cancel any short term plans given the pandemic. UPDATE: The Real Estate Board is not allowing any Open Houses after the weekend of March 21/22nd for the time being. Any sales already under contract are still obligated to proceed and properties are still allowed to be listed and sold, though Agents and their clients need to understand the potential issues we might face during this time period, which could include unexpected and required quarantines and lockdowns, unexpected changes to the financial market and possible illnesses. 

In the meantime, remember to continue to support local businesses and workers, when possible, during these times. Order take out and tip your delivery drivers. Treat workers and fellow residents kindly. Get outside for fresh air and exercise. Don’t forget the fun in puzzles, music, games and books. Call your friends and family. Follow protocol if required. And stay positive! We live in a strong and prosperous economy, and everything will be okay. 

I wish everyone health and happiness. I’m here if you need me and happy to chat about any of your questions with regards to real estate, now and in the future: kristi@realestatevancity.ca or 778-387-7371.

Kristi Holz FAQs

Multiple Offers and Vancouver Real Estate

Right now, the Vancouver Real Estate Market is BUSY! This activity, paired with low inventory, has lead to any good properties receiving multiple offers. Multiple Offers on properties for sale in Vancouver happen when the market is really busy (enough that inventory doesn’t meet demand) or when a listing agent strategically lists a property far under its value. Here’s what you need to know.

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Kristi Holz FAQs

Using Renovations & Staging to Increase the Value of your Home

I have a lot of clients ask if they should renovate their property before they sell. This question ranges from people asking if they should do a full renovation on an “original condition” condo to whether or not they should paint and replace the floors. There isn’t a blanket answer to this question – it depends on your financials, your timeline, the market and the condition of the property.

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Kristi Holz FAQs

Recent Changes to Condo Insurance in Vancouver

NOTE: This column is not a substitute for professional insurance advice. Please speak with an insurance advisor to discuss your situation and options. Always make sure you have a current home owner, landlord or tenant insurance policy in place.

What is Strata Insurance?

As a homeowner, landlord or renter, you need to have home insurance in place to protect you in case of accidents, unexpected issues, theft, etc. Every condo building also has a “Strata Insurance Policy” that covers the owners in case of extensive damage that extends into multiple units and common Strata property.

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Kristi Holz FAQs

A Quick Overview of Condo Maintenance

When you’re looking for a home, you need to find a unit you like, and one that’s also in a good building. My job is to help you avoid the bad buildings and make sense of the decent buildings. One of the most common details the Buyers, especially first time home buyers, don’t totally understand is building maintenance and what makes a worthwhile building. Below is a quick – and far from extensive – overview of some of the most common misunderstandings and considerations to make.

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Kristi Holz FAQs

Buying a Pre-Sale Condo

People always have questions about buying a pre-sale condo, and for good reason, it’s a different process than buying a typical (re-sale) condo.

When you purchase a pre-sale condo, you’re buying the unit directly from the Developer and often before construction has even started, if not, it’s typically before construction has finished. You and the Developer are making a contractual obligation with regards to a specific unit: they promise to build it, and you promise to buy it, with a big caveat: You don’t get to see the unit until it’s in your possession. Here’s what you need to know about buying a pre-sale condo.

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