An option often overlooked by those who wish to own a home is the purchase of a condo or condo. But, the traditional single family home is not the ideal situation for everyone. For those just starting out, affordability can be an issue. An empty nest may want to shrink in size and not have the hassles of yard work and other maintenance. Or it may simply be that the traditional family home does not follow your lifestyle.
When you own a condo, you own title to the space within the walls of your home. The common areas such as corridors, roofs, parking lots, green areas and pools are shared with the other owners of the complex. The most common type of condo is the apartment style, in which you can have units on either side of you and above and / or below. However, there are other styles. There are units that are designed more like semi-detached houses, with one or more levels and one or two common walls with the neighbors. You can even find a condo in a building that was a multi-unit apartment converted to condo units.
Condos are attractive to many buyers because they offer them the opportunity to own their residence and accumulate equity at what is generally a lower cost than a single-family home. Of course there are exceptions, like the luxury condos that many developers are building downtown and in affluent neighborhoods.
One factor to consider is that condo owners generally must pay a monthly condo association fee. These fees cover the cost of maintenance, repairs and improvements to the common areas of the community, as well as the cost of the services of a property management company.
However, if you prefer to spend your free time doing something other than mowing the lawn, painting the exterior of your house, or waiting at home for the pool keeper, then a condo may be for you.
Other benefits of owning a condo are the amenities that can be part of your complex, such as a pool, tennis courts, gym, or clubhouse. These are some of the benefits that you may not be able to afford or even have no space for if you were to buy a single family home.
Of course, as with all things, there are some downsides to owning a condo, such as the lack of privacy that a single-family home offers. You are also limited to the rules and laws of the community association, which can range from how to display a satellite dish to the types of animals you can keep.
Is a condo the right living arrangement for you? Make an informed decision by weighing the pros and cons. Talk to a real estate professional who is familiar with condos and the laws that govern them. Get a preview of the various condos in your area to get an idea of how the properties are managed. If your real estate professional has sold condos at one of these complexes, find out the type of feedback they have received from clients.
Condo living isn’t for everyone, but it can be an attractive option for those who want to own rather than rent.