If you’re thinking about buying a brand-new condo, one of the foremost thoughts on your mind is likely how long the build will take. Questions might arise, such as how early to think about listing your current home for sale or how long to sign on your current rental lease.
The build time of a condo project can vary depending on a few factors.
A condo project is not like the construction of a single-family home. With a single-family home, a buyer signs a purchase agreement and construction is started almost immediately. With a condo building, however, a certain percentage of units must be sold before construction can begin.
Because of this, the pre-construction phase can last anywhere from a year to as much as four years, depending on how successful sales are.
This may seem like an “oh no” moment, but there are advantages to getting in early!
Let’s take a look at the details on the process of building a new condo.
The Sales Period
It’s during the pre-construction phase when most of the sales take place. A condo developer will often have a list of agents they work with to secure the initial sales needed to start construction.
The sales period will likely be the longest part of a newly built condo project. Because the developer must have a certain number of sales to begin, once that number has been achieved, the process will start moving more quickly.
Luckily, at Symphony Tower, we’re already way past this stage so you won’t have to wait.
The Construction Phase
Once construction begins, you will see the building coming to life. Once the structural parts of the building are completed, you’ll likely have the opportunity to choose your colours and finishes in your condo. This is only available if the condo developer offers this option; some design each condo in a standard set of finishes.
The construction period of a condo is typically at least six months and will be significantly more depending on the style of building. A high-rise building, for example, can take up to three or four years to complete, where a townhouse project can be six months to a year.
Keep in mind, construction is a volatile process with a variety of moving parts, including several inspections that can hold up progress. This is especially true in Canada, where winter can often bring construction to a complete halt.
Again, Symphony Tower has already been constructed, so this wait time doesn’t apply.
In some cases, the condo developer may give owners on lower floors the opportunity to move in as their units are complete. Other parts of the building may not be ready such as amenities or units on higher floors.
You might prefer to wait until the project is complete before moving in, as you may not wish to live in a construction zone. It will depend on your unique situation and preferences, and whether you have alternative living arrangements to fall back on.
There are some financial benefits to taking advantage of interim occupancy. You’ll only be responsible for mortgage interest at this point, not the whole mortgage payment. Condo fees and property taxes will be due during this period, but only having to pay mortgage interest for a period of several months can ease the strain on your finances.
Once the interim occupancy ends and the building is officially released to the owners, your standard mortgage payments begin.
Registration and Titles
With a brand-new condo project, registration for the building doesn’t happen with the municipality until the project is complete. Because of this, the title deed to your condo will not be transferred to your name until registration has occurred.
Right to Cancel
When buying a brand-new condo under construction, make sure your contract includes a clause that provides you with the right to cancel should your life circumstances change during the pre-construction and construction periods. Since some projects can take several years, a lot can happen in this amount of time, and the last thing you’ll want is to be obligated to a purchase you can’t fulfill.
Buying a brand-new condo under construction has a number of benefits over buying a resale. The opportunity to save money, choose your own finishes, and move in early (or wait) puts you in control of your situation. It may not be an immediate move, but the benefits are often worth the wait.