With all the condo construction happening here over the last few years (and continuing), there are lots of Cuenca condo rentals available. Most of them are owned by Cuencanos as investments. A few are owned by expats who haven't yet moved here full-time.
Almost all of the condos are outside of El Centro, the downtown of Cuenca. Many are located along or near one of the city's rivers.
If you're more interested in living downtown, you'll want to read the Cuenca apartment rentals page.
Many of these buildings are less than 10 years old, so they have many of the amenities that we've come to expect in North America, including hot water pipes to all the sinks and showers.
However, some of the older ones will have only a shower. No bathtub is available, although the shower is often full-length and six inches or so deep. You could probably make a shallow bath if you plugged the drain.
Condos usually have common hot water from a boiler, unlike the older apartment buildings, where you'll likely be lugging propane tanks up and down.
Unfortunately, many of the newer condos don't have a stovetop/oven appliance. They have gas burners built into the countertop (usually granite). If you're lucky, an oven may have been added by the owners to the cabinetry, where a place is usually built for one, including a propane connection.
If the owner hasn't put one in, you'll have to buy one yourself, do without, or convince the owner to put one in. But you'll likely see an increase in rent.
Most condos also have washer and dryer connections, but most don't have the appliances. Fortunately, lavanderías (laundromats) are everywhere and very inexpensive, especially considering that they do the washing, drying and folding for you.
The woman across the hall from us in the condo building we were in was so uncomfortable in all three beds in her apartment that she slept on the sofa. Be sure to test all the furniture before agreeing to rent the apartment. If any of it is of poor quality or in disrepair, ask the owner to fix or replace it.
Also check that there are sufficient dishes, pots and pans (of good quality) and other items, like a dishrack.
Many of Cuenca's condos don't have balconies, and almost none have a terrace. Sometimes you'll find a terrace if you rent a second floor condo, or one of the ones at the top of the building. But consider yourself lucky if you find an apartment you like with a balcony or terrace.
Most condo apartments are larger than traditional, older apartments. There are a lot of 3 bedroom/2 or 2.5 bath units, but not as many two bedroom units. You'll have to search harder if you want just a one bedroom.
Most three bedroom units are at least 1,000 square feet, although some are as small as 800-900. Two bedroom units are 600 square feet to about 1,000.
If a unit is three bedrooms and at least 1,200 square feet, it's possible that you'll find a maid's quarters, located behind the kitchen or the laundry. Most people use it as storage, although if you're lucky enough to find one with a window, you could use it as an office.
Most condo buildings (unless they're just a few floors high) have elevators. Look for a building with at least two elevators, or you could be waiting a while to get somewhere.
Just about every condo building in Cuenca has full-time security managing the entrance into the building. They usually have a secure garage with either a door or a gate. And they all use remote controls for the garage door or gate. If you drive, you'll appreciate being in control of your comings and goings.
All newer condo apartments have landline phone wiring and cable wiring in the walls. Some of the older ones may not have cable wiring. If you don't see cable outlets in the living room and/or master bedroom, it may run along the floor or ceiling and then come up, or down, to a location in a particular room.
If there's cable wiring, then you can have TV and high-speed internet via that cable. Otherwise, you'll need a DirecTV satellite (but only if you have a west-facing location for the dish) and internet via the telephone line.
An unfurnished condo rental in Cuenca shouldn't cost you as much $500, unless it's an extraordinary apartment, or gigantic (we tried renting a 5,000 square foot apartment for $700 a month, but it was already taken).
You can find a furnished condo for as little as $500 a month if you do your research. If you don't do your research, especially on-the-ground research, you could end up paying as much as $1,000 for a three bedroom furnished apartment.
Do a search at Google for Cuenca condos and you'll find a long list of sites that have condos for rent. You'll find many that interest you, and perhaps one or two that seem perfect.
You'll soon find, however, that many of them are no longer available. There's no exclusivity in real estate in Ecuador, so two or more agencies may be trying to sell or rent the same condo. One may rent it but the rest still have it listed as available, and won't even know it's off the market until you ask about it.
One agency we recommend is Cuenca Condos. You'll find Benjamin Wheeler-Harsh to be a valuable asset in your search for a Cuenca condo rental.
As you can see, there's a lot to watch for when shopping the Cuenca condo rentals market. Use the information provided on this page to bolster your research and you'll soon find exactly what you're looking for, at a reasonable price.
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I just want to thank you both soooo much for creating this web site. I am originally from Cuenca but moved to New York 11 years ago and have not being back since. My husband and I are planning on visiting Cuenca over the Summer and this web site has helped me a lot.
When I came to the US we still had the "sucre," the bus ride cost 1,000 sucres and a pack of trident gum would cost 3,000 sucres. I am very nervous to go back, but thanks to your web site I now know what to expect.
My husband is American and Captivating Cuenca has taught him a lot about what my great city has to offer, things that I had forgotten about myself! :)
Thank You both so much! I cannot wait to visit Cuenca!!