While in many ways buying a condominium in Florida is similar to buying other types of residential real estate, there are some differences. Typical Florida condominium closing costs include the fee for the attorney, broker's commission, property tax and condo association proration, survey, appraisal, and inspection. The condominium's seller must also pay off the mortgage or any liens on the property by the sale closing date.
Condominiums in Florida
Unlike a single-family dwelling, condominium owners own their home's interior, but the rest of these planned developments are owned communally with other residents. Common ownership generally includes the land, swimming pool, meetings areas, lobbies and exercise facilities as well as the plumbing, wiring, roofs and walls. Under the Florida Condominium Act, condo owners elect representatives to a board of directors to manage the common property. All owners in the condominium association must follow the board's rules and regulations.
Condo Seller's Closing Costs
If there is an outstanding mortgage on the condominium, the seller must pay that off at the closing, usually with the money received for the unit from the buyer. Before the closing date, an escrow officer contact's the seller's mortgage company, bank or other lender, verifying the amount remaining on the loan. At the closing, the original loan is paid off before the seller receives the rest of the sale proceeds. The seller also must pay his prorated share of property taxes and the condo association fees, the broker's commission, title insurance, real estate transfer taxes and the deed's documentary stamps.
Condo Buyer's Closing Costs
Condo buyers in Florida must pay their legal counsel and their prorated share of the property taxes and condominium association fees. In Florida, property taxes are due every November, so the buyer's and seller's share of taxes depend upon what month the closing takes place. Generally, Florida condo buyers also pay for a complete inspection prior to the closing date.
Negotiated Condo Closing Costs
The condo's sales price is not the only item sellers and buyer negotiate. Different closing costs fees may also be negotiated. A seller may agree to pay all closing costs permitted by law if the buyer pays the full asking price for the condo. If the buyer has concerns about certain parts of the condo, such as cabinetry or appliances that are not commonly owned, the seller may offer to pay for an inspection. While these items are negotiable, it must be clear who pays for what before the closing. All terms and agreements must appear in writing and should be reviewed by the condo's seller, buyer and the respective lawyers before closing.