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Are higher floors worth the extra money when buying new condos?

December 20, 2010 - Updated: December 23, 2010

High Floor View

When buying a new condo, one of the most import aspects to consider is how high do I want to live? It’s an inevitable question that must be answered prior to purchasing and it’s no small decision because prices can fluctuate by tens of thousands of dollars.

As a general rule of thumb, an extra $1000 per floor is to be expected. There is also a floor premium when you clear hydro lines (floor 15-16) and of course when you get to the penthouse floors. An increase of $10,000 is a very realistic number. I just experienced this a couple weeks ago and believe me the builder was not advertising that premium. But is all that extra money really worth it for an extra eight to ten feet? Can you really get back your money when you sell it in the future?

Looking at just the cost you might think that there is no way you can get your money back. However, there are hidden costs to living on low floors. One of the major downsides of living on a low floor is that you pay rent to the builder until the building is registered. Just because you have the keys and are living in your condo does not mean you own it. 90% of a condo needs to be occupied BEFORE the application can be filed with the city to make it a legal condo development. Imagine being on the 3rd floor of a 75 story building, you will have to PAY RENT FOR YEARS before owning the unit and STARTING your mortgage.

There are also other reasons why it is better to be on a higher floor. Say you wanted to rent your unit out, you would charge more since you paid a higher up front cost for it, would you not? You also get a better view because of that extra money, so you expect to sell your condo for more because of the view, do you not?

So YES, a higher floor is definitely worth the money. BUT if you ask me to explain how you can get back $10,000 by going from floor 15 to 16, there I have no answer for you. Stay clear of that floor and you won’t have to worry about it. Find a realtor to represent you when buying a new condo. It costs you nothing and you get someone representing your interests. The builder hires their own sales staff to represent them, who is representing you?

What are your thoughts? Would you pay more for a higher floor?

Tagged with: toronto condos condos floor premium high floor roi
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