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Old 01-31-2016, 06:15 PM   #4676
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Noob over here:

Can anyone school me on purchasing a pre-developed place?
Looking to purchase my first place in the next few years, and I really like the idea of developments because I can have the warranty, and a place built to my liking instead of having to do renovations in the future.

Would I need more than the standard 5% down for first time home buyer?
How would a mortgage work? Start after the place is fully built?
Are stratas established before place is done? (To see if strata fees will be ridiculous?)
Do I choose the unit/floor while doing the presale?

Asides from my initial downpayment, what other fees should I be expecting to have upfront?
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Old 01-31-2016, 06:33 PM   #4677
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I am confused how they will build a condo unit to your liking? It will be the same as the other 299 in the building.
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Old 01-31-2016, 06:39 PM   #4678
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I just did this. I'll try and be comprehensive.
The down payment will be dependant on the developer. We paid 15%
Mortgage will be organized for possession, as any other place thats already built.
Strata fees are set by the developer, however once a strata is fully formed once it reaches a certain occupancy they can, and will change. The more amenities, the more they will cost, but it depends how big of pieces of shit your strata members are (most of them will be unless you are very lucky)
You will purchase the unit, not just a floor plan, so you will pick exactly where your unit will be.
You will need to pay a lawyer for closing costs. I believe thats all you will need the extra money for.
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Westopher is correct.
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Old 01-31-2016, 06:41 PM   #4679
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I am confused how they will build a condo unit to your liking? It will be the same as the other 299 in the building.
He will be able to pick finishings and floor plan. Poor choice of words, but you get it.
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Old 01-31-2016, 07:02 PM   #4680
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FYI I heard those home warranties are almost a gimmick and the warranty companies have a million ways to avoid responsibility
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Old 02-01-2016, 10:04 AM   #4681
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i wouldn't say it's gimmick. i know people that had to it. here's 1 example for a condo:

there is a limit to the home warranty. if it say covers up to 2 million and repairs cost 3 million, you need to cover the difference

also let say it's 2 million to cover x,y,z. lets say a,b,c happens that the developer/GC should fix. they refuse and say "it's covered under home warranty". coverage is for you not them.
so your strata uses it and warranty tries to go after GC after but is not successful then you just used up a portion of your warranty.
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Old 02-01-2016, 11:49 AM   #4682
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Adding to what Westopher has already said:

When I was looking for my apartment, I've been told by different developers that they need anywhere between 15 - 30%'s worth of down payment. When I bought the place, I paid a $1k deposit on the unit right away. And then I had 7 days to pay off the remainder of what amounts to 5% of the purchase price as down payment. During this initial 7 day period, I had the option to cancel my purchase and get the full refund back.

The next 5% down payment is due within 30 days after the initial $1k deposit. And then there was a third 5% payment due within 3 months, I think. So up to the ~3 month mark, I paid 15% worth of down payment.

At the time when I was asking, my bank told me they will approve a mortgage that is worth up to 80% of the unit if it was my primary residence, or 70% if it was an investment unit.

By law, I can't remember how long a developer has to complete the building -- it should be somewhere between 18 - 24 months at most. The sales person will tell you a completion date, but take it with a grain of salt. I was told to expect a completion date in Oct / Nov when I paid the deposit when the project has just started. The building wasn't completed until next July, and for some reason, we weren't notified until late Aug even though others have already started moving in by late July. In any case, the absolute date for completion is written in the contract for pre-developed units, so make sure you ask to see that.

Do not expect a new building to be trouble-free. There is going to be a lot of little (or big) problems happening. In the new condos / apartments I've lived in, I have experienced at least the following:

- a central HVAC unit (for the common area of whole building) breaking down, but the developer refused to take responsibility. It took some legal action from the strata before the developer finally caved, and the deal dragged on for well over a year.

- The hot water tanks system that the developer installed failed 3 times within the 5 year warranty period. Strata was told that this type of system is much cheaper to install, but generally only has a life expectancy of something like 3 - 5 years. So when the building's 5 year warranty was about to expire, strata voted to have the entire thing replaced with a different system that was a lot more reliable, but also a lot more expensive.

- A valve of some sort in bursted multiple times (albeit at different levels), causing water damage to multiple units. The home owners had to be evacuated from their own newly purchased home for a solid 3+ months, and there were all sorts of issues when it came to insurance claims. This one is really too long to summarize here.

- The 2 elevators regularly stop functioning. Koni was the elevator company, and they could fix it in the morning, and only have it break down again in the afternoon. For months, there was only 1 elevator in a semi-working state, and that one doesn't go to the lobby / main entrance where the mail boxes are.

- The in-suite HAVC was dying in some units of the building, and mine was one of the affected ones. I think I had gone through 2 replacements before the problem was finally fixed, but one of the waits happened during winter because the replacement unit was on national backorder, and my unit was without central heating for a solid 3+ weeks.

Maybe I was super unlucky to be stuck with all that crap. But at the end of the day, don't assume things will be fine in a new building. From the lessons that I've learned, the only thing I can say about a new building is that it comes with the 2-5-10 warranty. I was very fortunate in the regard that I have almost always lucked out with a very good strata council that kept on pursuing the developer, but you can't always count on that.

As far as strata is concerned, I seem to think that it doesn't get formed until at least 50% of the units has been taken possession (by home owners). Some of the problems (pipe bursts and elevator problems) happened before strata was formed, so home owners were dealing directly with the developer at the time, and it wasn't pleasant.

If you are buying with the intention to have the place as your own primary residence, my biggest advice is to buy a place that you think other owners will also be using the place as their primary residence. If they are investors, they are more likely to not give a shxt about the long term maintenance issues of the building. Rental tenants are also more likely to not care about the long term maintenance and condition of the building as well.

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Originally Posted by Araaadi View Post
Noob over here:

Can anyone school me on purchasing a pre-developed place?
Looking to purchase my first place in the next few years, and I really like the idea of developments because I can have the warranty, and a place built to my liking instead of having to do renovations in the future.

Would I need more than the standard 5% down for first time home buyer?
How would a mortgage work? Start after the place is fully built?
Are stratas established before place is done? (To see if strata fees will be ridiculous?)
Do I choose the unit/floor while doing the presale?

Asides from my initial downpayment, what other fees should I be expecting to have upfront?
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Old 02-01-2016, 12:01 PM   #4683
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Another disturbing trend I've noticed is (at least it is true with a few of the recently built / yet-to-be-built high rises near Metrotown), some developers are not giving the buyer the explicit choice to pick their own preferred unit. They don't even tell you which units are available still. Instead, they just show you all the different floor plans that are available, but they won't allow you to pick the actual floor of your own choosing. Rather, you tell them which floor plan you want, the sales agent go to talk to the sales manager, and comes back to offer you with 1 or 2 units at a certain floor.

The key point here is, the sales manager chooses the floor for you, and you have the option to take it or leave it.

In my experience, the developments that use this type of selling scheme are generally quite tall (30+ floors?), so maybe they are doing this in the name of efficiency. But as a buyer, I want to choose my own unit, not having to beg the sales manager to allocate one of their available units to me.
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Old 02-01-2016, 12:04 PM   #4684
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My new purchase i had to put down $5,000 for 6 days to hold the unit i wanted after 6 days they required $77k and in 4 months $41k. A total of 15%, each developer is different.
Speaking of new purchases and stories
Purchased a new low rise on hastings about 9-10 years ago. Here comes the nightmares.
-Developer went bankrupt
-Late building the unit by almost 1 year
-Hardwood floors were bowed
-No fridge or bathroom fan at inspection time or when i received the keys, fridge took 1 week. I had to draw up a fake letter from a lawyer to get the fucker to come and install and supply a fan. It took 2.5 months.
-Both "new" boilers went in the first 6 months. We didn't have hot water for like 2 weeks.
-Countless other problems i cannot remember. but hated everything to do with the building
I got the hell out of dodge after 1 year because i knew there was alot of problems with the building and going to be costs in the future.

2nd new purchase
Developer Polygon
Late by 1 week, not bad if you ask me
-1 wall had 2 big bubbles in the drywall, a picture easily covered this up
-vent fan for the microwave was missing (i never knew this until i recently sold this place) Never really use the microwave lol, fixed this for less than $10.
Recently sold after 6 years, no issues other than wear and tear items.

3rd new purchase
Developer Polygon
Currently under construction ill let you know

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Old 02-01-2016, 01:28 PM   #4685
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Rule of thumb with presales is buy if the developer is well known and established. A lot of new developments are going up by companies I've never heard of and I would personally stay away from.
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Old 02-01-2016, 02:01 PM   #4686
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Truth, that's all you can really do. Looked at the new property yesterday at Renfew and 1st with Grandma and I'm warning her not to consider because Thind is not a trusted developer and I don't give a crap how many properties they've done their name constantly comes up when it comes to negative shit. Omni is another one that's on my banned list.
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Old 02-01-2016, 02:16 PM   #4687
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Old 02-01-2016, 02:21 PM   #4688
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Polygon was built 1 month earlier than expected and only had some issues with cabinets in kitchen on inspection. Has some bubbling (I think hinges were not screwed in correctly and cause it). So far satisfied with it. Sadly not satisfied with strata
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Old 02-01-2016, 02:48 PM   #4689
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If you are buying in a busy area try to find out about visitor parking and get it in writing, my building got screwed by the developer, in the presentation center a salesperson mentioned there would be visitor parking and once it was complete the developer was renting out all of the spots. Also for my presale they had a lawyer set up if you wanted to use him for closing to keep your costs down. I didn't find the lawyer added anything so this time i'm just using a notary for my current purchase to save some money.
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Old 02-01-2016, 03:23 PM   #4690
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The latest bizarre story I heard was someone bought a new development (not sure which one) and at the time they bought another parking spot but the developer didn't factor in enough spots for something I think it was handicap or something so they had to take that spot away from him. Man if that was me id be pissed, looking at places now if they don't have a 2nd spot for sale that's a deal breaker for me and I just walk out of the sale centre.
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Old 02-01-2016, 03:28 PM   #4691
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I'm just moving into my presale condo this week with the wife. Pretty much everything has been covered so I won't reiterate it all.

One thing I took from it all was to not expect "brand-new" in the way you would a packaged good or even a car (most of the time). I told my wife this going into our walkthrough, and she was just disappointed with some of the finishing and work that was done. We went nuts with the painter's tape marking deficiencies, and basically are left at the mercy of the developer who refused a second walkthrough before closing.

I guess we'll find out later this week!

Oh and one other thing- most new places nowadays will have a year to report deficiencies in your unit to the developer. This would include stuff like sinking/cracked drywall, things that stop working, etc. It's a small condolence given that the developer chooses when the "fixes" will happen.
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Old 02-01-2016, 03:31 PM   #4692
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The lack of parking spots is not surprising at all. I seem to have the impression that older apartments aim for something like a 1.5+ stalls per unit, but newer developments only aim for something in the range of 1 - 1.25 stalls per unit. I seem to recall certain developments specifically going for something even lower -- 0.75 stalls per unit seems to ring a bell for one of the new buildings I've seen -- I think the bachelor suites don't come with a parking spot at all.

I need to be like SumAznGuy, parking 4 cars in the spaces he has at his condo.
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Old 02-01-2016, 03:54 PM   #4693
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To be fair to the developers, the lack of the parking spaces has more to do with the city. Cities have been restricting the number of parking spots allowed for most multiunit residential buildings to encourage public transit. The developers always try to jockey for more spots because they can sell them easily.
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Old 02-01-2016, 04:01 PM   #4694
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When I started looking a year ago I was told that 2nd parking spots are harder to come by now but have been surprised that about 75% of the places I've looked at so far offer a 2nd spot for sale. Some wait list, some you can buy right away depending. Going price seems to be 35k but I've seen as low as 5-10k for a few too.
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Old 02-01-2016, 04:16 PM   #4695
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^^
Truth, that's all you can really do. Looked at the new property yesterday at Renfew
been in that building. each wing is not on equal level so potentially twice as many elevator stops. i'm like wtf when i was looking at the riser diagram.
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Old 02-01-2016, 04:20 PM   #4696
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I think the lack of parking spots is moreso to do with using ever inch for sellable space. You'll always find older buildings have more spots than newer, also more amenities typically.

The building I currently live in in Burnaby has an indoor pool, saunas in change rooms, gym, ping pong and pool tables, two raquet ball/squash courts, and a "party room"

We pay $250 a month in strata and every additional parking spot is only $25 a month

Older buildings ftw
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Old 02-01-2016, 05:42 PM   #4697
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been in that building. each wing is not on equal level so potentially twice as many elevator stops. i'm like wtf when i was looking at the riser diagram.
Those Thind properties though are so different vs any other Sales Centre I walk into i.e. Jameson, Polygon, Porte, the list goes on. The sales people are so much more low class in appearence and speech, you've got c lais working there pushing sales. The 3 bed units should really be 2's and the 4 beds should be 3's it just wreaks like wtf is wrong with this place. But they sell, their demographic from what I can tell are mainly old east side CBC families who won't move out of Van and can't afford anything else. It's cheap, for Van but you pay for what you get.
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Old 02-01-2016, 05:49 PM   #4698
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On the topic of presales, just got back from the Arc presentation centre and put down my $10k deposit. They'll let me know in a few weeks "if" I can get a unit. It's getting beyond ridiculous.
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Old 02-01-2016, 06:35 PM   #4700
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On the topic of presales, just got back from the Arc presentation centre and put down my $10k deposit. They'll let me know in a few weeks "if" I can get a unit. It's getting beyond ridiculous.
On saturday i tried to get into the sales center for "Lougheed Heights" its a Bosa development North of lougheed on north road

Saw a lineup so figured the sales center must finally be open, so pulled it walked to the line. Was the only white person there of about 65+ people, one of the sales people came out and began asking people for their ID's in order to designate them a spot in a proper order as it looked like chaos inside with people trying to get to the desk. Turns out it was a "VIP" signing day and everyone there in the line was already buying.

As the salesperson rounded the corner, i shit you not, not 1 single person of the numerous GROUPS of people in front of me, approx 25-30 people could understand what the salesperson was saying, it was simply

"please provide me with a copy of photo ID if you are signing today"

she had to go back in and get a translator to talk to that portion of the line, when she finally got to me i figured what was going on and left as i just wanted to have a look
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