In our downtown market, there are plenty of 1 Bedroom buyers...and the up buy for real 2 bedrooms is so significant in costs to purchase, taxes, condo fees etc....that there are many good 1 Bedroom, and some 1 Bedrooms with den (Great new listing in Lorraine just came on) that are excellent opportunities. With Wireless home computing systems, the demand for the "2nd Bedroom/Office" space has considerably lessened over time for single buyers. Another point to illustrate the factual consideration of your question, market times for sales of units $250k and under in downtown are a THIRD of resale times for those over!
First Weber Realty
I would concur with most all of the comments from the agents. In the west Washington area, those condos are closest to the University and we see a lot of students in that area. So a 2 bedroom can be very important for those buyers so they have an extra bedroom to rent (or use as a study). For future investment, some of the larger complexes are getting great rental for those units. For example, I have a past client renting a 2 bedroom, 1 bath condo in Metro Place for $1800 per month. So for a future investment as a rental income property, there is a lot of possibility. But please pay attention when selecting a condo that you review all of the financials of the development paying attention to their budget, their P&L and their reserve fund. A healthy association should have a larger reserve fund and operating well within their monthly budget.
Generally (nationwide), 2 bedroom condos are easier to sell than 1 bedrooms. The reason: Lots of people use that second bedroom for a home office, an exercise room, or some other function. And usually there isn't a huge price spread between 1- and 2-bedroom units. But . . .
It appears (from those in Madison--and conditions and preferences vary geographically) that in downtown Madison 1-bedrooms have enough of an advantage over 2-bedroom units in price, and they're popular enough, that you could go with a 1-bedroom unit.
Alex posted some useful numbers, though the differences between 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom units doesn't sound all that much. For instance, 343 versus 325 average cumulative days on market. That really tells me that either one is going to take nearly a year (on average) to sell. Same message with inventory--sounds as if neither is selling particularly well.
My advice--purely as an outsider after viewing this discussion--is to recognize that if you buy either, so long as market conditions don't improve substantially it'll likely take quite a while to sell it. Therefore, you might want to reconsider buying at this point. Alternatively, if you really want to buy, make sure you're buying at a really good (i.e., low) price going in. And if the average cumulative days on market is 325+, it seems likely that a few of the sellers--either of 1- or 2-bedroom units--might be willing to really give you a good deal just to get the darn thing sold.
And if you can buy for less, then you're keeping your costs down. And you'll be able to sell for less when it comes time for you to sell.
Hope that helps.
Good Luck. Email or call if you have further questions.
Donna Birschbach - Keller Williams Madison
1. Each real estate market is unique. Within a market, say Madison, the market conditions in each neighborhood can vary significantly. One size doesn't fit all.
2. In the neighborhood you're considering--West of the Square out to Park Street--you'll do better with a one bedroom condo. Here's the data for the year ended December 19, 2011:
-27 one bedroom condos sold and there are currently 28 active listings, so there is 12.4 months of inventory for one bedroom condos in this area.
-43 two bedroom condos sold and there are currently 59 active listings, so there are 16.47 months of inventory for two bedroom condos in this area.
-For one bedroom condos sold in this time period, the average cumulative days on the market was 325 and the median days on the market was 138 in this area.
-For two bedroom condos sold in this time period, the average cumulative days on the market was 343 days and the median days on the market was 189 days in this area.
3. For any home, It is important that you buy right and when you sell you list at a price that is competitive.
The numbers speak for themselves. I hope this is helpful.
If you'd like any help buying or selling, please feel free to contact me on my cell phone anytime at 608/345-9009 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Warm regards and best wishes,
For resale purposes, I would be more concerned about the floor number if considering a high rise (higher is better), the view you have (another building, parking structure, the lake, etc) and the functionality of the floorplan.
If you're considering a new project that isn't 100% sold out I might be concerned if this was a short term living situation for you. You may still be competing with those unsold units in the future.
Coldwell Banker Success
With "all things equal" a two bedroom will sell sooner than a single bedroom. There will be extenuating circumstances though that will impact the "all things equal". Views, location, amenities, etc will all affect the resale value. Are you looking in a specific building or neighborhood downtown? Give me a call or text at (608) 770-2144 and I can help you determine the value of what you are looking at. You can also use the Market Insider tool on my website at http://www.SearchMadisonWIHomes.com/mimarket to help research pricing trends.
First Weber Group
A 2 bedroom makes more sense in many ways - for resale, more space, room for guests. Even for a single person, a 2 bedroom is more functional. For the difference in price, I would strongly recommend a 2 bedroom.
I've attached a link to some 2 bedroom condo's in downtown Madison.
Please let me know if any are of interest, I would love to help you find your new condo.
Keller Williams Realty 608-235-0431
The Marie Souza Team - Top Selling on Cape Cod
Cape Cod Real Estate Services