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Can I Remodel My Condo?

By Mike in Miscellaneous with 0 Comments

Have you found a condo you love, but it looks like it needs a little work? Renovating condos isn’t quite as simple as renovating a stand-alone house, but this doesn’t mean condo upgrades are impossible. Here’s what you need to know before you start planning any remodel for a condo.

Check Your Condo’s Rules About Renovation

You’re bound by whatever rules and regulations you agreed to when you bought the condo. Even though you can usually renovate a condo, if you live in a building where renovations aren’t allowed, you’re out of luck. However, this isn’t typically the case. You just need to make sure you apply for any necessary permits, alert the condo board at the proper time, and schedule your renovations for the building’s allowed hours. Learning the rules before making renovations will keep you from making plans like installing hardwood flooring that may not be permissible in some condos. If you’re looking for the right piece of San Diego real estate, downtown has a diverse array of condos, so you’re almost certain to find the one that suits your needs perfectly.

Determine Which Elements Have to Be Left Untouched

Since your condo is part of a larger building, there may be restrictions about where you can renovate. Things like seemingly random columns may actually be structural elements that you’re not allowed to remove. Typically, condo owners aren’t allowed to remodel the external parts of their condos, such as doors and windows, without getting approval and ensuring the renovations match the building’s overall style. Since you cannot make add-ons or adjust external wall positioning, you’ll also need to come up with plans that work with your condo’s existing shape.

Be Aware of the Quirks of Condo Renovations

Condos aren’t always built like single-family homes, which can lead to some surprising issues during construction. For example, door frames are usually metal and difficult to remove, so it may be easier to add decorative metal instead of replacing them altogether. Another thing to consider is that ceilings are often concrete, so adding sconces instead of pendant lighting is easier. Finally, lighting and plumbing may be shared with surrounding units, so you might not be able to change these elements entirely without spending a lot of time and money.

Talk to Your Neighbors

Even if you already have permission for the project from your condo board, it’s still a good idea to chat with your neighbors about your plans. Alerting them about the renovations and working with them to find ways to avoid upsetting their schedules is a good idea because it ensures you don’t end up feuding with neighbors later on. Holding off on noisy cabinet demolition until after a baby’s nap time or scheduling your renovation for when a neighbor is on vacation can help you build a positive relationship with neighbors.

Renovating a condo yourself can save you a lot of money, but make sure you’ll be able to remodel it before you buy. If you’re looking for condos in downtown San Diego, your first move should be to talk to the real estate experts at 92101 Urban Living, who know exactly where the greatest buys can be found. Call 619-649-0368 today to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced agents.