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$500K vs $600K Condo: What’s the difference?

The differences between a $500K condo and a $600K condo may surprise you. Glancing quickly at the surface, it doesn’t seem like the difference is that great, but taking a closer look at the details, the difference is a bit more noticeable.

Let’s first take a look at two Vancouver homes in the downtown area sold around July and August in relatively close proximity to each other to get a better look at what the differences are.

4th Floor Condo at $500K

The first home we’ll explore was a home sold at between $505,000 and $515,000. It’s a 4th floor condo built in 2008 and located on 1212 Howe Street.

Some basic information about it includes:

  • No renovations were made
  • 1 parking space
  • No storage locker
  • 516 square feet in a rental building
  • A pet friendly building
  • A maintenance fee of $242 per month
  • No amenities in the building

The cons

This is a perfectly fine place of residence. And while it is quite nice, there are a few cons to the building. For example, there is some wasted space in the foyer, the kitchen is off to the side and dark with a dropped ceiling. The condo has a bit of a view facing the rear alley, but the potential of future developments in the neighbourhood could mean that the view could be blocked on the 4th floor.

The pros

Aside from these points, some positive things about the building include a large kitchen with a lot of working space for cooking. It has an outdoor space to sit out and take in some vitamin D. There is also a formal dining area and a full bathtub. The size of both the bedroom and living room are also quite nice.

Are you ready to see the comparison of what the difference in $100,000 makes?

15th Floor Condo at $600K

The next condo we’ll share with you was priced around $595,000 and $605,000. Although the building was slightly older, built in 2004, the condo was on the 15th floor and located in 1001 Richards Street.

The basic information from this building is as follows:

  • No renovations were made
  • 1 parking space
  • No storage locker
  • 516 square feet in a rental building
  • A pet friendly building
  • A maintenance fee of $280 per month
  • Amenities include lounge, library, meeting room, and gym

The cons

Aside from the amenities included, the condo at first glance is very similar to the first one mentioned. Let’s first take a look at the comparison of cons. This unit has no outdoor space, no formal dining room, no bath tub, no entry into the bathroom from the bedroom, and on top of that, the bedroom access is by sliding door.

The pros

However, some of the pros include a walk-in closet, a larger den and indoor storage space, minimal wasted space in the foyer, an open kitchen, and a nice view that likely won’t change or be affected by future development projects.

Specific buyer interests

One thing that’s important when deciding on whether or not you want to spend more is understanding your personal preferences and needs. Many of the characteristics of the second condo are specific preferences to certain buyers, such as not having a bathtub or outdoor space.

Both homes have quite a bit of trade-offs of pros and cons in terms of the layout. For some, it is a necessity to have washroom access from the bedroom, and a proper dining room space, while for others, it’s not as imperative. The interior conditions of both condos were similar with the most notable difference being that he Howe Street condo has a light colour scheme as opposed to the dark colour scheme in the Richards Street condo.

At the end of the day, the points that make the biggest difference in the final sales price are the floor level and the direction the condo is facing.

As long as you know what you need to be happy, both condos are great choices to make a home. If it is the case that spending a little more per month on mortgage would give you something better that you’ll be happier with and it is within your budget, then you shouldn’t hold back on what you feel is best for you.