Blog Buyer A New Condo Just In Time For The Holidays.

A New Condo Just In Time For The Holidays.

By Martin Cross, January 2, 2023

Kris sent me a text in early November saying that she wanted to start looking for a condo. The end of the year isn’t always the most opportune time to go house shopping because there are less homes on the market. Both because people don’t want a bunch of potential buyers tromping through their home in the winter time, and they don’t want to disrupt the flow of their holiday celebrations.

Buying a condominium requires a bunch more patience than purchasing a home to begin with, because there are several other layers of complication. The largest of which is finding a condominium complex that has a good homeowners association (HOA) that is well run, well financed and free of any current, or upcoming assessments that require big outlays of cash by the owners, new or old. To increase our challenge, Kris was buying using an FHA loan. The Federal Housing Authority requires that for buyers to purchase a condominium, the complex must be an FHA approved complex. This narrows the field of options quite a bit as many condominiums don’t want to, or don’t qualify to go through the process to get “FHA certification“.

Undaunted and full of patience we started our search with realistic expectations. At the time, there were only four condominiums available that were FHA approved, and only 3 that were within her desired price range. We visited all 3 and 2 were immediately ruled out for condition and/or guest parking situations that were completely inconvenient.

There was one possible contender that was well-maintained, had some recent updates, and had a layout that she liked. However, it backed right up to a freeway, and also not only had a situation where guest parking was less than ideal, it also was a huge complex that was half used as rentals that were managed by a separate management company. In reading the reviews of the apartments it seemed like it could be a place full of challenges.

Kris was just about to ask me to write an offer on it anyway when another condominium, in a different area, had a serendipitous price drop. The price was still slightly outside her comfort level, but after we assessed the benefits of a quieter, prettier complex with convenient guest parking and the likelihood that these features would increase the ability to resell should the time ever come, Kris was convinced that we should go for it.

As often happens in a market like this, once a property experiences a price drop, it can suddenly become one that several buyers are interested in. As such, we entered into a competitive offer situation, but emerged, triumphant and began the transaction process!!

As mentioned before, on top of the typical hurdles of buyers inspections and the property needing to appraise at value, usually the biggest challenge in purchasing a condominium is the research and analysis of the homeowners association, and how well it is run. There’s a special time period in real estate transactions for the buyer to do their due diligence and thoroughly investigate all aspects of how the HOA is run. Fortunately, in this case, once the seller provided us with the piles of documents required (meeting minutes, bylaws, reserve study & CC&Rs, etc) Kris’ analysis showed that the HOA was very solid, well funded and run well.  On top of that, the property inspected well and the appraisal came in above sales price!

Just a few short weeks later, I was privileged to be able to give Kris the keys to her new condo just in time for the holidays!

Martin Cross

Broker | OR & WA


I have lived in Portland my entire life and spent the last 20 years in the Creston-Kenilworth neighborhood of SE Portland. As such, I know inner SE like the back of my hand and I am very familiar with most neighborhoods in the Portland metro area. After almost 25 years filling people's homes with great design and art I shifted my love of finding great things, for great people, towards Real Estate. My eye for quality and attention to detail serves both my buyers and sellers equally. As a business owner most of my life, I understand the concepts of problem solving, coordination with others, and hard work. I always say..."Great things rarely come from a 40 hour work week." If you want a Portland native who is hard working, responsive, and compassionate - give me a call. I look forward to working with you to find that perfect home or that perfect buyer for yours whether the house be Craftsmen, Modern, brand new, or a fixer.
Read More
  • T: 503-781-2950
  • F: 503-961-8224

You might also enjoy

Interest Rates, what is going on?

Evan Denhart

The last few weeks and months have been a bit up and down with regards to...

RECENTLY LISTED- Traditional 1992 Beauty in the Heart of Garden Home

Yonette Fine

Traditional 1992 beauty perfectly sited in the heart of Garden Home on a corner lot with...


Alyssa Isenstein Krueger

709 SW 16th Ave., #304 Portland, Oregon, 97205 Why buy a downtown condo at the Ritz...

Just Listed! Have You Ever Seen A Myrtlewood Tree?

Leanne Bach

8558 N Allegheny Ave Portland, Oregon, 97203 If you haven’t, there is the most beautiful Myrtlewood...