With the proliferation of condominiums throughout the Greater Toronto Area, a noticeable trend has emerged: the inclusion of balconies as a prominent design feature. While this architectural addition may enhance the exterior aesthetics, prospective buyers often question the practicality of these small and narrow balconies, prompting them to ask whether they are truly essential. As a Toronto residential developer, let’s answer this question!
Do Toronto Condos Need Balconies?
Legally, the answer is no. In fact, there are a lot of rules and regulations limiting developers from creating larger balconies. Additionally, building balconies can be financially burdensome, which has led many developers to contemplate their omission from design plans.
However, from a utilization and marketability perspective, balconies are indeed in demand. Real estate agents encounter challenges when attempting to sell units lacking private outdoor spaces, even if the balcony is of minimal dimensions.
Do Buyers/Renters Need Balconies?
When it comes to occupying the space, the overwhelming answer is that buyers and renters demand balconies. Despite the abundance of public green spaces in Toronto, individuals value having their own personal outdoor area. In fact, balconies are one of those amenities that almost everyone has on their “must haves” list.
Do People Use Condo Balconies?
Funnily enough, although many individuals insist on having balconies in their living quarters, a significant proportion confesses to seldom utilizing them. This tendency can be attributed, in part, to the design limitations of Toronto condo balconies, particularly those found in newer developments, where their reduced size and narrowness restrict their practicality. Moreover, downtown condos frequently face neighboring buildings in close proximity, leading to privacy concerns.
Even if people don’t use them regularly, balconies’ major benefit is that they increase the sellability and rentability of units. During the pandemic as well, many people realize that just because they don’t use their balconies often, having a place to enjoy the outdoors when they wanted was a huge benefit.
In conclusion, while the current design of Toronto condo balconies may leave much to be desired, the demand for them remains strong, indicating that their presence in residential developments is unlikely to diminish in the near future.
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