Listing a property requires experience, skill and finesse. From the initial marketing to the final price negotiations, everything needs to be tailored to the type of home being sold. However, because of their main differences, selling a condo versus selling a house is very different.
Reason #1: The Homeowners Association or HOA
All condos come with some type of HOA, or homeowners association that handles the common areas like swimming pools, the exterior of the building, some insurance, and landscaping.
However, all of this comes at a cost. The first is money; a HOA cannot operate or pay necessary expenses without charging residents a monthly fee. The second is freedom; most HOAs have rules called CC& R's that need to be followed.
When selling a condo, potential buyers will balance the costs of each HOA with the benefits. When comparing the benefits to the cost, the value is very close. If water is included in your HOA fee, the cost will be higher. While the average San Diego County condo HOA fee without a pool or water included runs $275 to $350; with water and a pool, the fees run about $350 to $450. However, downtown San Diego high rise condos have much higher HOA fees to cover the maintenance of the elevators, insurance, security, and the building itself in the $750 to $950 range.
Reason #2: Real Estate Investors
When selling a condo, it's reasonable to expect a larger number of investors considering the property than when selling a house. After all, renting out condos is a big business.
As a result, selling a condo could mean a faster closing, a cash offer, or even competing bids if the condo is on prime property.
Reason #3: The Type of Buyer
Different types of buyers look at a condo versus a house. For starters, condos are generally smaller, have a patio or small yard if any yard at all. All exterior landscaping is handled professionally, and frequently come with amenities like a swimming pool or fitness center.
While a good majority of potential buyers with children would love a swimming pool with zero maintenance, they aren't willing to make the trade for a smaller space. This means that when selling a condo, potential buyers will generally be single adults, newly married couples, or retired professionals looking to downgrade to an easier property.
Reason #4: Location, Location, Location
Every real estate agent knows that one factor, above all others, is most important when selling a property: location. Being close to town versus far away from traffic, near downtown excitement versus in a quiet neighborhood, or near shopping centers versus on the edge of nowhere all come into play for a property's value and desirability.
Generally speaking, condos tend to be closer to urban areas, shopping, and entertainment. This also means that their price per square foot is frequently higher. As a result, owners looking to sell their condo should carefully consult with their real estate agent about the best way to market their property and a fair listing price.