Purchasers may find smaller suites more cost effective
In condominium sales offices, shoppers often ask why we build so many small suites. Condo developers respond to market demand — and right now, smaller suites are in demand because they’re cost-effective for the purchaser. People who rent may be able to afford more square footage, but when it comes to owning, usually something has to give. Condos are an affordable housing choice that wasn’t around two decades ago — and today’s purchasers appreciate the opportunity to build equity for their future. More compact, affordable suites are good news for them.
The great news is smaller suites are designed for maximum functionality, so buyers discover that they can live quite comfortably in far less space than they might be used to. Modern designs incorporate every square foot in some usable fashion, and it’s a beautiful thing. Condo shoppers who come in convinced they need 800 sq. feet often change their minds after they realize a foyer and hallway are really not necessary, and they can do quite well in a 600-sq.-foot suite that has a kitchen with a breakfast bar.
My advice to those thinking of a condominium purchase and wondering whether a lower square footage can work, is to trust innovation to take care of you. Developers and designers continually research the market for products and techniques that improve on existing choices. The expansive windows in modern condos, for example, bring in glorious natural light that helps a space live larger than the numbers on the page might suggest. Situating a linear kitchen so that it is actually part of the living/dining room is both handy and stylish, and fabulous for entertaining. What great party doesn’t end up in the kitchen anyway?
And keep in mind that building amenities serve as an extension of your living space. If you like to exercise and there is a fitness facility in your condominium, you don’t need a spot in your condo suite for a workout bench or elliptical trainer. If you throw a party only a couple times a year, you can rent the building’s party room.
It may be a case that you can have more square footage if you live farther out of the city — but do you need the extra space badly enough to add precious time to your trip into and back from work? Even in smaller suites, condo living can work for you!
Linda Mitchell is Vice-President of Marketing, High-Rise for Monarch Corporation. In 2005, Linda was presented with the coveted OHBA SAMMY (Sales and Marketing Member of the Year) award. In 2003, she received the Riley Brethour Award acknowledging outstanding and consistent professional achievement in residential sales and marketing.