Buying a Condo Differs From Purchasing a Traditional Home

Buying a Condo Differs From Purchasing a Traditional Home

Buying a Condo Differs From Purchasing a Traditional Home

Photo Credit: Dinga/

Condo living versus traditional home living often comes down to lifestyle preferences. However, there are major differences between the two which can be the deciding factors in the decision. Each has benefits and drawbacks.

Ownership of the Land

The owner of a traditional home almost always owns the land on which the home sits. The owner of a condo owns the inside living area, but only a share of ownership in the common area or the yard space. The condo owner does not own outright any of the property on which the condo sits. A benefit of the condo for the owners is they have no responsibility for the maintenance of the yard or the exterior of the condo units. The roof is also not the responsibility of the owners.

Purchasing Price of a Condo

Condos generally cost less to purchase than traditional homes. The cost difference can be significant since more condos can be built on the land, and this is the case when the condo units are built on more than one level. The monthly association fees should be factored into the decision.

Condos Have Amenities

The use of pools and fitness centers as well as gathering spaces is often included in a condo purchase. Condos can create a social life which might be difficult to find elsewhere. Some have tennis courts and access to biking and hiking trails.

Condos may provide a safer environment. Condos may be gated or have a lobby that cannot be accessed by someone without permission. Protected car parking and lighted walkways is another generally available safety feature.

The Condo Association

The condo association can be a blessing or a curse. The association is responsible for managing the maintenance of the condo exterior, grounds and the amenities. The association is also responsible for managing the use of the condo owners’ fees. Assessing the health of the association is a good plan before buying into one.

Financial Considerations

Buyers considering the purchase of a condo should look at the initial investment for the amount of square footage of living space. Mortgages might be easier to obtain with a lower down payment for a condo purchase.

Evaluate the Ability to Lock the Door and Go

It is much simpler to leave a condo for an extended period than it is to leave a house. There is no need to arrange for lawn care or for someone to look after the property.

Lack of Privacy

Condos may not provide the same level of privacy as a traditional home does. This could be an important factor in favor of a home.


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