6 Reasons to Buy a Condo Instead of a Home?
Why buy a condo instead of a house? There are several reasons why a condo might be a better fit for your lifestyle. You know you want to buy in a metro area, and you keep seeing listings for places that look amazing, only to discover that the house you’re viewing is in fact a condo — in other words, a unit within a larger building that’s for sale by itself. If you’ve been dreaming of a single family home, the idea of condo living can feel limiting — but it doesn’t have to be. In fact, depending on the unit and building, condo living can be really freeing! You see, condos often come with lots of perks that aren’t available at an affordable rate to single-family homeowners.
1. You get to own your own place!
People sometimes think condo-ownership isn’t real homeownership because of all the rules, but condo-ownership is definitely still homeownership; you’ll have control of your unit within your four walls, build equity, and be able to sell when it’s time. Just like with a standalone house, you’ll decide how to decorate and remodel inside your unit to suit your needs.
However, this also means you’ll be responsible for any repairs or maintenance that your condo unit needs. Just like with a standalone house, you’ll need to create a budget for repairs and maintenance.
2. The amenities can be sweet
Pools, gyms, movie theaters, game rooms, shared community or outdoor spaces — you might have access to amenities at a condo that would cost a ton if you tried to build them for yourself in your single-family home.
Not every condo building has all the amenities mentioned above, and the ones that do will generally charge a bit more in fees, but it’s still way cheaper than if you had to build a pool, a home gym, and outdoor spaces (which can include a playground or even sports areas) in your yard. You’d need a lot of land for all those amenities — and, depending on where you live, land can be pretty expensive too.
3. You’ll likely be closer with your neighbors (in every way)
Condos foster a communal living environment — which is maybe not amazing during a pandemic, but during other times, this can be a real selling point for people who want to make friends more easily. A condo can be a great option if you’re new to town or going through any life changes that mean you want to build up your social network.
It’s hard not to become familiar with fellow condo residents when you’re running into them all the time at the gym or the games room, or even just walking your dog around the grounds. Casual conversations over time can grow into friendships, even deep ones, especially if you have similar interests or lifestyles, which is even more likely because your lifestyles and priorities led you both to this condo building.
Condos will have social activities for their residents, which can include barbecues and game nights in the common areas, or even off-site adventures in parks and museums. If a condo building doesn’t have a strong social committee, as an owner, you could always suggest creating one.
4. Condos are conveniently located
Condos aren’t constrained to any type of location — you can find them at the beach or in the middle of a bustling city’s downtown. What they do have in common is that they tend to be right where people want to live, which is usually near lots of fun things, like restaurants, grocery stores, movie theaters, parks, and other forms of entertainment.
If they’re not downtown, condos are often found near public transportation stations and hubs. Condo owners typically have a shorter commute than single-family homeowners. This is because land prices rise as you get closer to downtown areas, making a neighborhood of single-family homes unaffordable in spots that are perfect for a condo building neighborhood.
5. Condos require less upkeep
You aren’t going to have to worry about the siding, roof, lawn, and so on. The COA is responsible for maintaining all communal property spaces, so you don’t have to waste your time mowing the lawn or coordinating with a contractor to fix the leak in the roof.
If you want to go on a long vacation, you also don’t have to stress about alerting the post office or figure out who is going to shovel the sidewalk while you’re gone. This flexibility and freedom from upkeep makes condos popular with first-time buyers, young families, and people who want their weekends back (which could be anyone, really).
6. Condos are cheaper
Detached homes have historically appreciated faster than condos in the same area, which means you won’t have to spend as much on the down payment or on your monthly mortgage payment for a condo.
Condos do appreciate, and they are a generally good long-term investment, but if you’re on a tighter budget, condos are also a great way to get into home ownership with a little less money than you’d need for a single-family house.
Condos don’t appreciate as quickly in value as a single-family home, but you’ll still be building a future nest egg rather than paying for your landlord’s as a renter.
You’ll also be improving your credit history with on-time mortgage payments, so if you ever decide to buy something else with a loan (including another property), you may be able to qualify for a better rate than you would otherwise.