I met recently with my friend Shannon Dupuis, realtor at Keller Williams Elite Realty, and interviewed her for some valuable tips in purchasing pre-sales.
John: Why did you specialize in presale condos?
Shannon: Well, I started by helping a couple of my friends purchase their first homes and for many first time buyers, buying a pre-sale condo is more affordable. Pre-sale condos really caught my interest and so I decided to specialize in that field!
John: What are 3 things to be aware of when purchasing a presale condo?
Shannon: That's a great question! One of the common concerns with pre-sale homes is that the home is not built yet, so it can be hard to visualize exactly how the exterior and interior of the home is going to look like.
3 things to be aware of when purchasing a presale condo are:
Floor plans & measurements
Location of the unit in the building
Why people may choose to hire a realtor, even with pre-sale homes
The main things I look for in a pre-sale home for my client are:
Can my client picture themselves living in the home and that particular neighbourhood? Does the location fit their lifestyle?
Is the unit a good investment for my client?
When you purchase a home, you want to love where you live and be comfortable. And it's important to realize that you are also purchasing an investment.
John: When you are purchasing a pre-sale, you can’t see the place physically. Looking at the floor plans is important. What exactly do you mean by picturing themselves and what type of floor plans would be suitable?
Shannon: I would recommend to look at all the floor plans available and get the measurements for the floor plan you're interested in! Most floor plans will show the overall square feet of the unit, but not the approximate measurements of each room, walls, patio area, etc. Having approximate measurements can help you visualize the space and if it'll work for the kind of lifestyle that you have.
John: What would be floor plans to avoid?
Shannon: Non-functional floor plans. I've seen buildings where the exterior has a unique architecture that makes the building stand out, but the interior of the floor plans aren't functional. For example, the interior had weird angles where you can't fit a couch against a wall in the living room, so the couch would have to be placed in the middle of the room, taking up space, making the living area feel small. The floor plan needs to be functional!
John: What type of floor plan is better for resale?
Shannon: You want to choose a floor plan that fits your lifestyle. That's the most important part. If you work from home, then you might need an office space, so a 1 bed plus den might be the option for you.
You also want to choose a floor plan that not only you like, but potential future buyers find desirable. Some examples are:
an open concept floor plan
a unit with a decent amount of storage space – pantry, closet space, room for a dining table
Units to avoid in the building or units that are the least desirable:
units directly beside the elevator
units facing a busy road
units with the least desirable floor plan
...just to name a few!
John: Now talking about your third point, why do many people avoid going to the presentation centre on their own and choose to hire a realtor?
Shannon: Presentation centres are built to sell homes, so they're perfect when you walk in, all the staff are extremely friendly...you can choose to walk into the presentation centre to purchase a home or you can hire an agent. Both options are good, however most people choose to hire a realtor and this is why:
A realtor will be able to point out important things to consider about the development so that you can make a confident decision
They have knowledge of the area you're purchasing in and can offer their expert advice
For example, a realtor can look into the city to see what's happening in the area in terms of development, and what's happening around the condo you are interested in that might increase the value. For example: a new skytrain line being constructed.
If you are looking to purchase a pre-sale or have more questions, please feel free to reach us by filling in the contact form below! We would love to chat :)