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Are Condos Difficult to Sell?

Is It Hard to Sell a Condo?

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At the end of 2019, real estate analysts were trying to figure out what the new decade might bring to the San Diego housing market. During the summer, there were fears of a downturn, but they were assuaged by the September S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller report, which found property values had appreciated in the third quarter. As for the rental market, vacancy rates relaxed to 4.7 percent in November, and monthly lease prices adjusted downward as part of an effort to remain competitive in Southern California, where rentals have become too expensive for many prospective tenants. Conditions still look favorable for sellers who plan to list their properties in 2020. With regard to owners of condos for sale in downtown San Diego, they’ll likely enjoy plenty of interest from potential buyers, but some sellers may find the process a bit more difficult than they anticipated.

The HOA’s Financial Status

This is a factor that can make or break the sale. If the purchasing process was smooth for you when you bought your condo, it probably had a lot to do with how the homeowners association was managed at the time. At some point, your real estate agent or mortgage loan officer furnished HOA documents to the bank, and underwriters determined if it would be risky to lend based on the HOA’s balance sheet and reserves. In some cases, underwriters order a full condo appraisal, which means the inspector will take a look at the condition of the common areas and amenities to make sure HOA funds are being used as they should be.

Excessive HOA Fees

Boutique condo towers that offer state-of-the-art gyms complete with yoga instructors and 24-hour concierge service will invariably charge hefty HOA fees. When this is the case, clever real estate agents suggest you adjust the sales price in a way that looks like you’ll cover the first year of HOA fees.

Purchasing Restrictions for Specific Buyers

It’s been more than a decade since the American housing market suffered a spectacular crash. In late 2008, foreign buyers from Europe, Asia, and Latin America flocked to downtown San Diego in search of deeply discounted condos. Some of them arrived with suitcases full of cash, and others purchased multiple units through the clever formation of corporate structures. In 2020, foreign buyers are facing more scrutiny and restrictions than ever, and this makes selling condos a little more difficult than it used to be.

The Competitive Climate

By virtue of being lucrative, the downtown San Diego real estate market can get very competitive. While you’re scheduling tours of your unit on Saturdays, a seller across the street may have moved in with relatives to allow his or her real estate agent to stage the property so it looks like it could be on the cover of Architectural Digest magazine. Yet another seller may invest in an hors d’oeuvre spread to entice prospective buyers. You may not think these details will matter much as long as you keep your price reasonable, but they tend to have a significant effect.

Selling your home can be a stressful experience, so it’s a good idea to hire an experienced agent to take care of all the details for you. If you have a condo, loft, or penthouse for sale in downtown San Diego, reach out to the professionals at 92101 Urban Living to guide you through the process. Call one of our friendly agents today at 619-649-0368 and set up an appointment to discuss how we can help.