An exterior rending of Wolf Willow's newest condo building, The Banks by Cove Properties.

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What to Consider about Buying a Condo in 2024

Buying a condo is not just a financial decision—it’s a lifestyle choice. For those who want to spend more time outside and less time inside, especially in a nature-centric community like Wolf Willow, a condo can be an excellent choice. First-time home buyers, young families, and individuals contemplating downsizing often appreciate the convenience and sense of community that condos offer, making them a valuable lifestyle choice.

Wolf Willow’s condo offerings, such as The Banks by Cove Properties, present attractive opportunities to prospective homebuyers, especially as retirement or investment property ventures, or simply for living without the hassle of outdoor maintenance. If you’re unsure whether a condo is right for you, this guide will walk you through what to look for when purchasing one, whether it’s your first home or a step towards a simpler way of life.

An alternate kitchen L shaped floorplan in the condo building the Banks.

Understanding Condo Ownership

A condominium, commonly referred to as a condo, is a private residence within a larger building or complex. These can range from high-rise residential buildings to townhouse complexes to commercial spaces. The Banks falls into the high-rise residential category. But what sets condos apart from other homes?

1. Ownership Structure

Condo owners hold exclusive ownership over their individual units and share ownership of the common areas with other unit owners in the complex. These common spaces, managed by a condo association, includes areas like gardens, hallways, lobbies, elevators, parking lots, fitness rooms, etc.

2. Committee Governance

Involvement in your condo community is essential. Participation in governance is encouraged through attending meetings and serving on committees. You can vote on policies and more at general meetings and elect the board of directors.

3. Financial Considerations

Owning a condo involves paying monthly condo fees, which may cover the maintenance of shared spaces, utilities, insurance, and a reserve fund for future repairs. While these fees are an additional cost, condos often present a more affordable entry point into homeownership compared to single-family homes. While all homeownership comes with reoccurring or emergency costs, this article by the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation lists various expenses to consider when buying a condo.

4. Lifestyle and Community

Condos offer a turnkey lifestyle, which can be particularly appealing to first-time buyers or those looking to downsize. With on-site amenities like fitness centers, event rooms, and no outdoor maintenance demands, residents can enjoy both comfort and convenience in their homes. Plus, the community-focused living can foster neighborly bonds, which is especially true for a newer, growing community like Wolf Willow.

Condo living is not without its considerations, as owners must follow its condo association rules and will ultimately have less privacy than a single-family home. For many, the benefits of a maintenance-free lifestyle (no yard work) or single level home (no stairs) are reason enough to choose a condo life.

Are you a first-time homebuyer? Check out our homebuying 101 guide here.

An open concept living space in the newest condo building, the Banks by Cove Properties, in Wolf Willow.

Choosing the Right Condo for Your Needs

So, you’re ready to commit to condo life! It’s essential to align your condo choice with your lifestyle, financial plan, and long-term goals. Here are key factors to guide your selection process:

Financial Planning

  • Account for all costs associated with condo living, including closing costs, maintenance fees, and insurance.
  • For pre-construction condos like The Banks, factor in the wait times and payment structures.
  • Consult with a real estate agent to navigate the first round of sales and secure a unit that aligns with your budget.

Lifestyle and Location

  • Assess the proximity to transit, schools, and job opportunities, ensuring the condo supports your daily life and future value.
  • Do you want to be closer to nature or the hustle and bustle of the city?
  • If you like a specific homebuilder, are they building in the communities you’re interested in?

Unit Specifics and Amenities

  • Choose a layout that suits your needs, from the number of bedrooms to the availability of natural light and views.
  • Evaluate the amenities provided, such as fitness studios and rooftop terraces, and ensure they align with your lifestyle, be it family-oriented or pet-friendly.
  • Investigate the inclusion of modern conveniences like smart home features, which not only offer convenience but also add to the long-term value of the property.

By thoroughly researching and considering these aspects, you can find a condo in Wolf Willow that not only meets your needs but also enhances your quality of life, surrounded by good neighbors and nature, without the maintenance demands.

A living room with plush sectional, lots of natural lighting, and an electic fireplace with stone surround.

Benefits of Downsizing

Downsizing to a condo offers a multitude of benefits. Cove Properties have crafted their condos to provide residents with modern luxuries, open layouts, and scenic convenience, minus the maintenance work. Here’s how downsizing to these condos can enhance your lifestyle:

Reduce cost of living

Smaller homes like condos typically come with lower utility bills, mortgages, and property taxes. Reducing your cost of living allows for a redirection of funds towards investments, lifestyle enhancements, travel, or whatever makes your heart sing.

Less time spent doing chores

A smaller footprint means less living space overall, which can help you have a reduction in cleaning and maintenance time in the home, giving residents more freedom to enjoy the natural beauty surrounding Wolf Willow.

A primary bedroom with a king sized bed, dresser, and lots of natural, neutral colors.

Quality over Quantity

By living in a smaller space, there’s only room for so much stuff. Living in a condo can help people adopt a minimalist lifestyle by reducing clutter. This can lead to more mental clarity, allowing you to direct your energy to more positive activities. Additionally, the quality of fixtures and furniture in your home can be prioritized over quantity, allowing for a more curated and personal living environment.

Community and Environment

Condo living encourages strong neighborly bonds through shared spaces and activities. The environmental footprint is also reduced with smaller living spaces requiring fewer resources for upkeep. With thoughtful designs that include higher ceilings and abundant natural light, these condos offer an intimate atmosphere without feeling cramped, promoting both family bonding and social gatherings.

Downsizing for retirement

As you move towards retirement age, your priorities might shift for what you need in a home. Rather than spending time maintaining your backyard, maybe you want to spend more time with your loved ones. Or maybe you need to live in a single level home with no stairs rather than a 3-storey home.

A large covered patio in a condo building.

Choosing a condo in Wolf Willow

Wolf Willow currently features condos available for purchase from Cove Properties. Their newest condo development, The Banks, seamlessly blends contemporary design with the tranquil beauty of nature.

The Banks by Cove Properties

Riverside living at its finest. The Banks by Cove Properties are luxury condos starting from the $270s. These single-level homes have a variety of floorplans to suit your needs. These contemporary layouts come with:

  • an open concept living space
  • industry leading sound dampening
  • gourmet kitchens with full height cabinetry
  • high-end, energy saving stainless steel appliances
  • luxury quartz countertops
  • spa-inspired bathrooms
  • 5’ soaker tub & 5’ walk-in shower
  • If you’re ready to trade in your lawn mower for a walk along the Bow River, condo life in the Banks might be for you.

Take a virtual tour of one of the Banks floorplans here.

Embracing the condo lifestyle in Wolf Willow presents an ideal blend of community, comfort, and convenience tailored to different life stages, whether you’re purchasing your first home or transitioning into a simpler, downsized way of life.