Condo Owners Association COA

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Buying New Construction Condo

Buyers must understand condominiums before buying!  "Condos are a complicated purchase, first you must learn about the new construction world of condos and what is expected from the day of signing to registration day" says Linda Pinizzotto, Owner of Linda Pinizzotto Real Estate Group a Branch of RE/MAX Realty Enterprises Inc and and Founder | President of COA the Condo Owners Association.   It's time to invest in Real Estate but make sure you understand condominiums and work with a specialist.  

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Buying New vs Resale Condominiums

Buying a New Condominium

If you are purchasing a new construction condominium; take the time to review a number of concerns.

If you are enlisting the services of a Registered Real Estate Representative, you must enter into these development sites with your Sales Representative right from the start otherwise they cannot assist you.   

New Construction Condominiums are very confusing compared to the Resale Market.  The Sales Representative at the New Condominium Sales Office is hired by and represents the Builder.  They also may not be a registered Real Estate Salesperson.  It is very important to have your own representative.  

We highly recommended that all New Condominium Buyers enlist the services of a Residential Resale Real Estate Sales Representative who has a vast amount of knowledge relating to New Construction Condominiums, Condo Documents, By-Laws and Rules and Regulations of a Condominium prior to entering into any Model Site.   A licensed professional should have all of the knowledge listed below. 

Considerations on New Construction:

  1. Review reputation of the Builder
  2. Determine the launch date of the site - if there has been any price adjustments
  3. Ask if there is any additional Phases of Sister Buildings to this Phase of construction
  4. Ask if the 2nd Phase is a different Condominium Corporation
  5. Ask if there is any entity of Share Facilities relating to the Building ie. Recreation Centre
  6. Ask if the suites are Residential, Live-work or Commercial Usage /or both
  7. Review all floor plans for wasted hallway space in relation to square footage of unit
  8. Layout and Design, both living space, balcony or terrace
  9. Review the location of the Building and the direction the Unit is facing
  10. Note any vacant land or parking lots - Check with the City for Plan of the Area
  11. Review the list of inclusions and note those with additional expenses
  12. Calculate the Price per square foot of the Unit as per builder plans
  13. Ask Sales Representative to explain square foot calculation inside wall
  14. Confirm the price per square foot to determine the Maintenance Fees
  15. Review the proximity of the elevators and garbage chute
  16. Check if the building has energy features and tri-sector garbage chutes
  17. Check if the building has sub metering for heat and/or hydro
  18. Ask about finishings within the unit - ceiling height, floor coverings,
  19. Obtain a list of Inclusions  (ie appliances)
  20. Check light fixtures outlets on the plans (include those that are capped in purchase)
  21. Ask about the amounts of keys, fobs and mail box keys provided with purchase
  22. Ask if there are guest suites and if the superintendent suite is owned by the Corporation
  23. Is there a rooftop patio and/or swimming pool - sundeck or anyting of concern
  24. Note swimming pools on rooftop could be very expensive to fix - long term  

You will be provided an Agreement of Purchase and Sale

  1. Note the payment schedule of your installments
  2. Note the projected occupancy date and if there are any restrictions
  3. Have the Sales Representative explain the difference between Occupancy and Registration
  4. Ask if there are any conditions or preventions of Assignments
  5. Have the Sales Representative explain details on Assignments and/or Rental prior to Registration
  6. Ask about option to purchase parking and/or a locker
  7. Learn about the Tarion Warranty Corporation
  8. Understand Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act  
  9. Cancellation - 10 days is known as a "cooling off period"

Have your Solicitor Review during 10 Day cooling off period

  1. You will be provided with the Condo Documents of the Building  (approx 150-200 pages)
  2. You may also receive a package of By-Laws and/or Rules and Regulations
  3. Have your Lawyer Review these Documents
  4. Find out if there is any restrictions in the Documents relating to  ie. Pets, Barbecues
  5. Check Short Term Rentals and if they are time sensitive or unlimited
  6. Check if the Corporation includes any affordable Housing units
  7. Check if there are any leasing equipment  ie. boilers, communication room etc.
  8. Check if the full Parking Garage is Owned by the Corporation  
  9. Your rights when buying a condo

The New Home Warranty Act

The New Home Warranty Act provides Consumer Protection is also available in other Provinces in Canada.   New Condo Buyers must familiarize themselves with the New Home Warranty Plans Act when they are purchasing new construction homes.

All new build condominiums must be registered with Tarion Warranty Corporation, a private corporation established in 1976 to protect the rights of new home buyers and regulate new home builders. Generally the cost of the registration is charged back to the Buyer on closing of the purchase.

Tarion administers the Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act, outlining warranty protection that all new home purchasers are entitled to in Ontario.  Remember the Condominium Building is also covered under Tarion Warranty Corporation and the Ontario New Home Warranties Plan Act, RSO 1990, c0.31   The links below may assist you.

Published in Buying a Condo