Florida Condo Conversion :: Condominiums




Condo conversion, which changes the legal status of a property, has been very popular in Florida for decades. For a seller, the condo conversion process represents a way to legally separate and sell existing "apartments" one or more at a time. For a buyer, the process represents a less costly way to enter the home ownership market since a condo unit is typically much more affordable than a multifamily building. For a lender, the condo conversion represents increased and stable buying power.

Apartment complex owners across Florida are converting rental units into condominiums for sale, capitalizing on the hot housing market. A handful of state laws are designed to protect renters, allowing them to renew their leases for a limited time. Other laws require that renters be given the first opportunity to buy a unit. About 10 percent to 15 percent of renters typically buy a unit when their property is converted to condominiums.

A condominium consists of an individually-owned "Unit" and a share of group-owned "Common Area". The "Unit" is the space within the walls, floors and ceilings of a dwelling, and the "Common Area" is the remainder of the property. Owners pay their own mortgages, property taxes, and utilities, plus monthly "Condo Homeowners' Association Dues" to cover repair and insurance of the Common Area. A lengthy document called the "Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions" or "CC&Rs" establishes the rights and duties of the condominium owners.


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   No pre-sale requirements


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Buying & Financing a Florida Condo:

Since Condos are considered real property, condos qualify for homestead exemptions (owner occupied) in Florida. Condo developments are governed by covenants, conditions and restrictions. These dictate the owners' rights and the restrictions on those rights.

You become a member of the homeowners' association and pay dues. The dues cover management of the homeowners' association, hazard insurance for the complex and a certain amount of routine maintenance. Precisely what is covered varies.

The cost of the condo association dues will be included as part of your monthly housing payment when calculating how much house you can afford to buy.

The purchase agreement should include a contingency that the seller provide the buyer with condo documents, the articles of incorporation and the bylaws of the homeowners' association. This should include notification of any ongoing litigation and any special assessments.

You should receive a copy of the condo budget, which should be a sound, balanced budget with reserves to cover the cost of major repairs like roofing or elevators. You will also be told what is the monthly maintenance fee. You can also ask for the minutes of condo meetings for the past year. This will tell you if any major renovations or changes are being discussed, and give you some insight into the way the property is run.

Florida Mortgage Corporation will consider most Condo projects with up to 70% - 100% concentration of "investor" units depending upon the project. We will consider most condo projects that makes sense. Not all condo projects require a condo questionnaire to be completed.


Condos    ▪    Condo Conversions    ▪    Condotels


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