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May 8, 2008

Why are some condo fees higher in certain Philadelphia condominium buildings?

Filed under: Of Interest to Buyers,Real Estate: Condominiums — Center City Philadelphia Real Estate Agent @ 11:29 am

There are a lot of issue that may create higher or lower condo fees in certain condo buildings. Here is a list of ten that you might not have thought of:
1) Heat is included in the condo fees. The building has one system, and the cost to run that system is split between all owners of units in that particular building.

2) Water and Sewer are NOT included in the fees. Very rare…but does occur. May account for the fact that one particular building appears to have lower condo fees.

3) A porter is on-staff. This is someone, besides the front door man, who caters to your needs. IE: Trash removal, keeping the place clean EVERY day, etc.

4) An outdated master insurance policy. If you buildings combined unit value is say $3m, and you are only insured for $1.5M…then your fees are going to be lower than they should.

5) The building is a comprised of a small number of condo units, and therefore doesn’t need/have an outside managment company. This will keep your fees lower than most others.

6) The on-site swimming pool, parking, and grounds do not automatically clean and take care of themselves. Shocking. Someone’s got to pay for the upkeep.

7) The building is old, and suffers from no comprehensive, long term maintenance program. Assessments and increased fees are implemented to cover such forgotten upkeep.

8) A lack of common area can keep fees low. A low rise condo building with 4 common hallway lightbulbs is one way to keep the fees low. Especially if no elevator exists.

9) A “Green” thinking Philadelphia condo association that implements low wattage florenscent light bulbs, and utilizes low flow faucetts and toilets can keep fees lower than others.

10) Finally, a good, smart condo board that anticipates, rather than reacts to maintenance items can keep fees low in the long run. An ounce of prevention…….
Looking to keep your condo fees in check? Drop me an email at to chat about more ways to keep your condo fees in line.

Mark Wade
Prudential Fox and Roach REALTORS®
530 Walnut St., Suite 260 Philadelphia, PA 19106

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