Ground or Penthouse? How Floor Choice Impacts Your Lifestyle & Budget

Ground or Penthouse? How Floor Choice Impacts Your Lifestyle & Budget

If you could pick the floor your new condo unit would be on, what would you choose? Should you stay closer to the ground or should you set your eyes on the floors up high?

When presented with an opportunity to choose your floor, you should give it more thought than just what the number means. Although there are no good or bad floors per se, some will provide more comfort depending on your lifestyle and circumstances. After all, life closer to the ground floor or penthouse floor can feel quite different.

Who Needs to Think About Floor Choice the Most?

The short answer to this question is everyone. It doesn’t matter if you’re young and single, married with kids, or retired. Of course, some need to give it a little more thought than others.

For those with mobility issues or large families, for example, floor choice can impact your comfort level. The same goes for those of you with investment goals – certain floors will bring more value in both the short and long run.

There are numerous other requirements and conditions that should make floor choice more than a haphazard decision or afterthought.

Closer to the Ground Floor

Preference aside, there are many good reasons to choose a unit on or close to the ground floor. Some of those reasons are more obvious while others may seem like hidden benefits.

  • Lower costs – The lower the unit, the lower the price (usually). You can secure a unit that comes with all the perks of a pre-construction condo (plus a great location), for a lower cost.
  • More accessible/Outdoor Space – A ground floor unit is perfect for achy joints and bones (ie. if the elevator went out of service). Even if it’s the second, third, fourth or fifth floor, the closer proximity to the ground makes it easier to get in (ie. moving furniture) and out the door, especially on those rushed mornings. Not to mention, it’s easier to get out of the building if there’s an emergency. And if you’re really lucky and get a ground floor unit, you’ll have outdoor space like a traditional backyard.
  • Fear of heights – Perhaps you’re not keen on desensitization therapy in the form of getting used to living on a higher floor. No harm done. A unit closer to the ground can help you appreciate your view without trembling.
  • Summertime energy efficiency – Cool air sinks, which means in the summer you can keep your AC bills low since you won’t feel the heat as much.

Closer to the Penthouse Floor

There are also many good reasons to pick a unit closer to penthouse depending on your lifestyle and circumstances.

  • Nicer view – Let’s get the obvious item out of the way. If you want a panoramic view of the city at night or a sweeping view of the lake, then up top is the way to go.
  • More space – There’s more value in units with two or three (or more) bedrooms, and if you’re looking such units, then you’ll want to look at the penthouse. Penthouse units generally have higher ceilings, more rooms and larger space than units on the bottom or middle floors.
  • Investment/resale value – Want the most bang for your buck? The units higher up go for more, meaning higher down-payments and monthly costs, and of course, sell for more as well. For savvy buyers, these units often present the most value because of their cost per square footage, not to mention the extra rooms and space they can use or convert for their own preference. Therefore, investing in a condo higher up would bring more value for you as well.
  • Lighting & ventilation – Brighter lighting and more air circulates through units higher up. This is a big deal. Adequate lighting can drastically improve your mood (especially for certain mental health issues) just as proper air circulation can ease symptoms of allergies and asthma.

What About the Middle?

When it comes to the floors in between the ground and penthouse, again, there is no good or bad choice. The middle floors can have similar benefits to the lower and uppermost floors depending on where in the middle the unit rests.

If you’re dead in the middle, for example, you’ll have some unique benefits namely when it comes to heating and cooling costs since temperatures are relatively moderate.

Top or Bottom? It’s All About You

If you’re on the market for a new condo, spend a little more time scrutinizing your floor choice. Although no floor is better than the other, some will suit your lifestyle and circumstances more than others. It’s just one of the overlooked factors that can make your high-rise living experience that much better if you give it attention.

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