Living in an apartment has many advantages. It’s cheaper, you don’t have to maintain a whole house, and there are usually plenty of amenities close by. But before you buy an apartment in Torrance, CA, it’s important to do your research. That way, you won’t accidentally purchase a place that requires a lot of maintenance, is expensive to run, or doesn’t suit your lifestyle. 

7 Things to Know Before You Buy an Apartment in Torrance, CA

1. The Area 

Not every neighborhood is a good fit for every family, so it’s important that you check out the area before you start looking for places to buy. Walk around the neighborhood at different times of the day to determine whether you’d like to live there. Visit some of the shops, cafes, and other facilities, and speak to the people there. Ask them if they like living locally and what the best and worst things about the area are. 

There are several online neighborhood evaluation tools you can use to figure out whether a certain place is suitable for your family. Check the crime rate, average home price, walkability, and demographics to see how well you’d fit in.  

2. Current Market Conditions 

Experts recommend that you monitor market conditions in your target area for at least a year before you buy. That way, you see what kinds of properties are available, what the average apartment sells for, and how the price fluctuates throughout the year. Set up an alert with property companies and reach out to a real estate agent.

Tell the realtor about the kind of home you’d like to buy, how much you can afford to pay, and what features are important to you. They’ll alert you as soon as something suitable becomes available, so you’ll be the first to know about new properties on the market.

3. The Age and Condition of the Building 

When selling a house or apartment, owners often do cosmetic repairs to make it look like the property is in good condition. Don’t trust your first impression of a place. Instead, always hire an independent inspector. They will let you know whether any structural problems might require expensive repairs in the next few years. 

The same goes for the whole apartment building. Walk around the inside and outside of the structure, and check for cracks, broken sealant, or mold. These could be indicators of problems that might impact your quality of life. Pay close attention to what the hallways look like and whether all the facilities, like the elevators, are in good repair. If not, likely the building managers aren’t doing their jobs properly.

4. Building Features and Security Measures 

In an apartment block, you have less control over security measures than in a single-family home. There are also many more people coming and going, so it’s harder to prevent intruders from gaining access. Before you buy, find out everything you can about the security measures in the building. Some basic apartment block security systems include outdoor security cameras and intercoms. More upscale buildings might have a concierge.

It’s also worth checking out the building’s features to determine whether you’d enjoy spending time there. Is there a gym you could use? Or even a swimming pool? These additional perks can save you money and make life inside the apartment block more pleasant. If there aren’t any facilities inside the building, check the neighborhood to find out whether there are good supermarkets, gyms, cafes, and restaurants nearby.

5. Ongoing Fees and Maintenance Costs 

One of the biggest problems with apartment living is that you’ll have ongoing fees related to the management of the building. Sometimes, residents can keep these fees low by doing a lot of the work themselves or hiring budget contractors. However, many apartment blocks require residents to pay hundreds of dollars each month to pay for the maintenance of the hallway, communal bills, and the security system. 

There might also be a pot of money for renovations and maintenance, which you’ll need to contribute to. When you understand all the ongoing costs of living in your apartment, you can decide whether the place is a good deal. It’s also much easier to come up with a viable budget that way.

6. Car Parking and Storage Options

People who buy a single-family house don’t usually have to worry about parking because they either have a garage or a driveway in front of their house. This isn’t the case for residents of an apartment block. Always check whether there are enough parking spaces before you buy a place. Sometimes, parking is only available on the street, but luxury apartment buildings often have a dedicated garage for residents. 

You might also need to think about storage options, especially if you’re downsizing. Ask the property managers whether there is storage space for residents inside the building. If not, check that there are storage unit rental companies in the area.

7. How Your Neighbors Might Impact Your Lifestyle 

When you move into an apartment, you don’t usually have any control over who your neighbors are. For this reason, it’s important to assess how they might impact your life. Check the walls, floors, and ceilings of the apartment to find out how much noise is likely to travel from one unit to the next. If there isn’t a lot of insulation, is there anything you can do about it, like adding carpet?

Another factor to pay attention to is the smell. Walk around the apartment and check that there aren’t any bad smells. Make sure that your new home is easy to ventilate, ideally by opening the windows.

Always do your research before you buy an apartment so you don’t end up living somewhere you don’t feel comfortable. Some of the factors to consider include the area, the age and condition of the building, the fees and maintenance costs, the car parking, the storage options, and your neighbors. Call Teresa Mack to find an apartment in Torrance, CA. She’ll help you find the best deal. 

Your Deck of Success

Learn the Art of Success from Professionals - Don't Miss Out!

The stories within this book are condensed success lessons. Each author, experts and professionals in their fields, share their unique success techniques with you. Although each is varied, There are three trends that come through: define success, take action, and surround yourself with positivity.