Buying Tips

November 13, 2019, by: Fifth Avenue

Strata Living has its Perks

Often we hear some uncertain chatter about strata living. What does it truly entail? This article will inform you of all of the facts and perks of living in a strata-run community.

First and foremost, what is a strata & how does it work?

A strata corporation is made up of a small selection of homeowners in the community. These homeowners are under the guidance of a professional management company and together they oversee the needs of the community for a small fee. As part of the pre-sale process, the developer will provide an overall strata budget that gets voted in once the strata council is formed. Developers are also required to start off the budget with a surplus of money in a contingency reserve fund, so there is a cushion for the homeowners in the event of an emergency.

So, what do most strata fees cover you ask?

1. Maintenance – Are you tired of cleaning your gutters? Trying to reach those upper-level exterior windows for cleaning? One of the many perks of strata living is that it is virtually maintenance-free! Typically, your strata will have a professional company that takes care of all of those gruelling details. It’s as simple as finding a notice at your door or in the elevator with a heads up to keep your windows closed on a certain date so they can do the pressure washing and voila! You don’t have to think about it for another year. Most stratas also include snow removal – imagine never having to shovel again!

2. Landscaping – Would you like to never have to mow the lawn again? Don’t want to prune your trees every year? Well, you can donate that weed wacker as you won’t need it any longer!  Most strata living will take care of all lawn maintenance and landscaping. Just check your strata manual for all the details! And if you are a plant lover, don’t fret – you can still keep potted plants on your patios and backyards.

3. Insurance – Your strata fees cover your building insurance. Sometimes there is a misconception that you require home insurance on top of paying strata fees. While this is true, it is only for liability and content insurance which is a fairly low cost. Should you make any improvements to the inside of your home (for example, a living room built-in) you will be responsible for these additional insurance costs.

4. Professional Management – Each strata corporation is managed by a professional company. This means, there is always care and attention to your home and community needs are being met by a professional. Each year, the management company helps to facilitate the strata budget and assist the collective homeowners to make sure everything is running smoothly.

So, what are you worried about? Aside from saving you money on home insurance, living in a strata-run community can also reduce your heating bill as the shared walls help to keep your home warm. Add up your yearly maintenance bills and check the pain in your back from those pesky upkeep chores and tell us you still aren’t sure. Perhaps you are new to the area, and what better way to get to know your new neighbourhood by becoming part of a true community. Embrace strata living! Get to know your neighbors! Throw a block party! You may be surprised by the friendships that a close-knit community can bring. No matter if you’re an introvert or an extrovert, it will feel like home when you are part of the community.

REMEMBER: In any new construction purchase, you are provided with the opportunity to review the strata budget in the disclosure statement so you can see exactly where the funds are being allocated prior to committing to the purchase. Developers don’t get to make up these numbers, they are carefully chosen under the advisement of a professional management company.

Alongside these perks, there are also many more! Some of these welcomed additions may include; amenity spaces, common areas, hot water, and garbage pickup. Strata homes also typically cost less than single family homes. This brings forth more opportunities for young people who would like to own their own home and for the downsizers looking to cut their overall costs. Perks can also vary by the type of dwelling that you are in, be that a condominium or townhome. These homes are designed for a life of leisure, so kick up your feet and relax.

If you believe that strata living is perfect for you, check out all of the different communities we offer at www.fifthave.ca

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