Somethings old, somethings new…all need close inspection. Charlotte Condos Proliferate in and out of our city and over the boundaries…
I have spent much of today reviewing the raw data we received from the regional MLS office. We are posting the sold condominiums in 2007 by county, by zip and by complex. I had hoped to be finished this evening but am not. I began looking at all the new complexes for sale. Newly built or under construction condominium and town home communities in every direction here in Mecklenburg County, to the south of us in South Carolina and to the north beyond Lake Norman.
And I have a few comments about buying a unit in a newly constructed complex. Is the builder still there, is the community finished, how many are up for sale and what is the builder’s track record on warranties.
Our market has gone from being a somewhat sleepy town to growing at a fast clip. Many of the builders I do not know nor have I heard of them but that means little. What it does mean is you should read the fine print and ask a lot of questions.
In purchasing new construction, I recommend having a complete structural and mechanical inspection. Some folks think because it is new, there will not be any problems. But I have a friend who says how can we being do everything well if we are trying to do everything? I quite agree. I have been in and out of hundreds of condos and am often,repeat often, dismayed at the quality of construction and the quality of the building products. What has not been lacking is the ability of each layer of contractor, builder, job foreman, project manager to lay the blame on someone else. Even in the most expensive projects. I ask myself if you, the buyer, really cares…or maybe you just don’t know. If you don’t know, hire someone who does. Missing insulation, water heaters that are not connected, ducts that have fallen, johns that are not secured, doors that are not plumb, molding that doesn’t meet, paint that is sloppy…are simply not acceptable. Take pictures, put your complaints in writing and don’t close until it is right. On the brighter side, in the statistics for 2007, what I notice most are the complexes that have no activity. Usually these are the jewels in Dilworth and Elizabeth, Myers Park, Eastover and in the ring of older neighborhoods surrounding the vibrant center city.
I believe the resales of the older communities will fare well…these were most often built in the last ten to fifteen years, some perhaps older, and they are very well done…complete with tree lined streets and lovely neighborhoods.
Charlotte can tout a coming inventory of brand new condos in center city, a re-birth on the Westside taking shape in and around Bryant Park and running down the south side along the light rail. In that path you will find apartments and condos. Many of them. I look for density along the light rail.
All in all, Charlotte’s marketplace is diverse and exciting. Just be careful. Do your homework and read the fine print.
Lynnsy Logue, The Real Estate Lady and Condo CanDo, Charlotte, NC