There are many items to consider when buying a penthouse apartment. First and foremost, the age of the building and the condition of the apartment. Here are more items to consider:
1. The condition of the common elements (lobby, pool area, garage, decorations)
2. Finances of the building association (Are there are any outstanding assessments or assessments coming due)
3. The last 90 days of comparables for the building you are looking at and other comparable buildings in the area with specific concentration on what other penthouses have sold for and their condition at the time of sale.
4. Is the asking selling price realistic enough with the oother factors considered? Remember it is about price and terms that make a successful negotiation.
5. The roof worry is a good question for the building association.
Remember, buying a penthouse is the most expensive apartment in the building and when you look at resale in the future it will always take you longer days on the market to sell. That should always be a consideration before purchasing a penthouse. If, in the future, you think you may have to sell quickly, you may want to consider whether a penthouse is the right buy for you.
Insurance for windstorm coverage is a problem all over Florida. On the beach it can be even more so, but generally speaking, anything East of I95 in the Greater Fort Lauderdale area is penalized. In a condo, your insurance on the basic structure is covered by the association. Although you do not directly pay for that coverage, it is reflected in your monthly maintenance assessment. Coverage for the interior of the unit is really quite inexpensive, especially if you have impact windows or current code shutters.
In terms of hurricane concerns, high rise condos on Ocean Bl. are on the barrier island and therefor in the mandatory evacuation zone. If you have already decided to stay through the storm, you are probably aware of the risks and willing to take them.
Pros: Really great views, and since no one is living above me, there is no noise above me, which is terrific. For resale, almost everyone loves the idea of a "penthouse". It seens to have a certain cache.
Cons: Often times, it is a real pain waiting for the elevator, especially when one is out of service, or it is in season and busy. After Wilma, we had no power on the Galt for 4 days, so walking up and down 22 flights was not easy: but how often does a building not have power? It does not happen that often. During Wilma, I did not have any damage in my condo, although the roof was very badly damaged and needed to be replaced. They did have to re-tar the roof, which took a few months, so the noise was awful, and my place was so hot during this time that it was unbelievable. I could feel the heat coming off of the ceiling from the roof. If the roof is new in this building, then no problems there. It is a lot scarier higher up in a hurricane! But thunderstorms higher up are amazing.
Next time around, I will live lower. I want to be able tos ee tree tops and not be so high up.