Single family or condo or townhome? That’s a dilemma many home buyers face when purchasing a new property. In a condo or townhome community, you won’t have to take care of the landscaping and your neighbors will have to abide by the association’s rules. On the downside, you can’t make much, if any, changes to your property because of those same rules. Plus, there’s no room to add-on in the future if you’re family grows.
Pros and Cons
Many people think that paying a monthly homeowner’s association fee is just too much. But if you look at it differently, you realize it’s value. Think about it as a kind of mandatory savings plan. If you purchase a single family home, big ticket items will eventually have to be replaced.
…there are advantages and disadvantages to both types of housing, lifestyle and cost can help determine whether a single-family house or a condo is a more suitable dwelling for your needs.–San Francisco Chronicle
Conversely, as mentioned, you won’t be able to really personalize a condo or a townhouse. Sure, you can do what you like with the interior (for the most part), but you won’t be able to change the exterior.
Now we get down to the key factors. Here are some things you ought to give thought to before making your final decision between a single family home or a condo:
- Close proximity. Okay, so in some developments, single family homes are built close together, but they’re not attached. Noise might be a factor, so be sure to find out in advance.
- Privacy concerns. This goes with proximity. In a townhome or a condo, your neighbors won’t be far away. However, single family homes actually have more privacy issues because you can’t see through a condo’s walls.= but you can peer into windows on every side of a house.
- Maintenance and upkeep. Here again, paying an HOA fee is akin to paying for landscaping, pool maintenance, pest control, and all the other stuff that goes with owning a single family home. If you’re the DIY type, a condo probably isn’t a good fit.
- Price and location. Sure, you might want to live downtown or near the beach, but single family homes in or near these areas are usually pricey. A condo or townhome might be a better fit for your budget.
In addition, think about resale. No matter which you choose, you might move again and you’ll want some return on your investment.