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Baby Boomers Might Change Investors’ Stance on Ground Floor Units

baby boomerTake one look at the number of ground floor properties sold as against the non-ground floor properties. Take one look at the difference in purchase prices via the comparable sales report. Take one look at their rental rates. I bet you will find a stark difference. Ground floor units have not been perceived as a desirable purchase historically and this has its own sound reasons.

Burglary incentives and child safety concerns

To begin, you will only agree that the ground floor units propose quite an easy access to burglars. They may think twice before invading the upper floor units but the one on the ground is quite a salivating prospect for sure. On top of this, there are child safety concerns on the top of dwellers’ mind.

I had this colleague- a very optimistic one- who said in a jocular vein that “there is this great thing about ground floors; at least my young toddler won’t fall from the window”. Yeah! That’s true but then it is pretty much all you can say in favour of ground floor units when it comes to the question of child safety.

Tenant preference is investor preference

Investors are keen on avoiding the ground floor units because they are not the ones most desired by tenants. Investors parking their money in the market look for capital growth and rental yields. In terms of the latter, tenant preference becomes an important aspect. Show me a tenant who does not prefer pleasant view and I will show you a Platypus breathing through its gills.

Tough to tackle ‘vacancy periods’

I quote another colleague harassed with his ground dwelling. He was just flabbergasted with the constant noise congestion. The reason, he said was, “these guys on the top have a teenager who loves to dance but they don’t get him a floating surface….what wreck is this hard timber of theirs causing, I can’t even begin to tell you”. I understand, don’t I? Observing the trends, one can easily comment why ground floor units face heavy vacancy periods.

Strata Bylaws

Good news is that all this might change and pretty soon. The strata bylaws for unit apartments are changing and in doing so; they will present a mightily pleasant case for ground-floor dwellers. As a first, strata bylaws changes will ensure that pets are allowed into the units and smoking is banned in the balcony and the courtyard area.

Baby Boomers

You may wonder if I am suggesting that smoking bans will make upper-floor units less desirable. NO. That’s not my angle.  I am actually banking on the Baby Boomers that are closing in on the retirement age. Soon, there will be a flurry of downsizers, looking for apartment units in the coveted neighbourhoods.

Mobility is assured

For reasons of assured mobility, they will prefer the ground floor units a lot more. After all, living anywhere apart from the bottom floor may propose serious locomotion issues to them; especially in cases where an arthritic knew is the culprit.

Mass retirement scenario

Ask any reverse mortgage agent, ask any granny flat constructor, ask them all and you will understand why I am stressing on the Baby Boomers so much. They are just that “idea whose time has come”. In wake of their mass retirement, apartment units will be constructed in keeping with their preferences. Already, the changes in bylaws are quite heartening for them.

New developments must be pondered over

Pets at their age are a much loved company (they create a sense of wellness) and smoking bans helps them live in an atmosphere that their lungs love. If you mix the two developments (bylaws changes and baby boomer retirement) and add the trend (that they love ground-floor units), you will quickly comprehend why such units will be more sought by investors now.

After all, we all love older tenants. They have some money to park and so the tenancy deposit is a formality for them. They are not eager to buy their first homes (and leave without much notice) and they are much better in maintaining indoor areas and manicuring lawns.

Great many reasons why we should begin to reassess the merit of ground-floor units, aren’t there?