couple considering condo vs house

Source: martin-dm / Getty

Black women and millennials are becoming homeowners more than other Black demographics. According to Realtors.com, women bought homes at quicker rate than Black men “an average year-over-year growth rate of 10.4% between October 2018 and September 2021,” while Black millennials are the “primary driver[s] of Black homeownership.”

The National Association of Realtors reports that 34% of buyers in 2021 were first-time owners. The report also found that the average home purchased in 2021 was 1,900 square feet with three bedrooms and two bathrooms, and that energy-efficient features like good heating/cooling systems are becoming increasingly important to buyers. No matter what features you’re looking for in a home, you’ll eventually have to answer this question: condo vs house? Each one has its pros and cons. Neither one is inherently better– it just depends on the buyer’s needs and wants. So, should you get a house or a condo? Here are things to consider.

 

 

Pros And Cons Of Condos

Brightly colored inner-city terrace houses - Abstract

Source: ImagePatch / Getty

Pro: In A Condo, The HOA Handles All

If you are overwhelmed by the idea of researching landscapers, painters, power washers and every professional needed for exterior maintenance, you might like a condo. The Home Owners Association board will handle all of the vetting, hiring and managing of these professionals. You’re just responsible for taking care of the inside of your condo.

 

Con: HOA Dues Can (And Will Increase)

Some homeowners want a predictable monthly cost of living. A condo doesn’t always allow for that because homeowners association dues can, and often do, rise over time. In some buildings, they increase for years at a time and when they do, the increase is only minimal. However, in some buildings, HOA dues can skyrocket, leaving you with a much larger monthly bill than you had budgeted for.

 

Pro: HOA Dues = Forced Savings

The beauty of HOA dues is that they serve as a form of forced savings for emergencies. When you own a single-family home, learning you have to replace the roof or the driveway can be financially devastating. However, in a condo, the HOA is constantly assessing and tracking when these big repairs will need to be done. They calculate and increase your HOAs accordingly, so that, by the time that roof needs to be replaced, the money is already in place for it.

 

Con: Less Privacy

Living in a condo will naturally mean having less privacy than if you lived in a house. You share walls with your neighbors, meaning you might hear what goes on in their homes, and vice versa. It can also mean asking upstairs neighbors not to jump rope at six in the morning, or having your neighbors tell you to be quiet after 10 p.m.

 

Pro/Con: Renovation/Construction Limitations

Because you share walls with your neighbors in a condominium, there are often strict rules about renovations and construction projects. This can be seen as a pro or a con. It is a pro because there likely won’t be many massive renovations happening that disturb your peace. But it is a con when you’re the one hoping to make those renovations, and the HOA won’t allow it.

 

 

Pros And Cons Of Houses

Toddler having fun on bicycle with mother at home

Source: PixelCatchers / Getty

Pro: Houses Share No Walls

You get maximum privacy in a house, so long as you’re inside. Once you go out in your yard, the neighbors might see and hear you. But, inside, you enjoy privacy. There will also be fewer disputes over noise complaints when you do not share walls.

 

Con: Insurance Costs More

When you own a home, you need insurance not just for your house but also for the land. In a condo, the HOA insures the “walls-out” portion of the home. You only need to insure the interior. But when you own a house, you must pay to insure every inch of your property, inside and outside of your house.

 

Pro: Houses Appreciate More

If your home is part of an investment portfolio, it’s important to know that houses could be the better choice. Online legal information library Nolo, reports that houses tend to appreciate more over time than condos. This is in part due to buyers being hesitant to purchase condos, because of the unpredictable HOA dues.

 

Con: More Maintenance

In a condo, the HOA handles all exterior maintenance and you don’t have to think about it. But you are responsible for all maintenance and upkeep when you have a house. So it’s on you to vet the landscapers, the company that will pave the driveway, the painters and beyond. And it’s up to you to manage these projects.

 

Pro: More Autonomy In Renovations

When you own a house, depending on where you live, you will generally have more power to renovate and build than in a condo. You do not share walls with your neighbors, so you don’t face the same limitations put in place in condos. There will still be local regulations about what you can build on your property, but in general, you’ll have more freedom to do what you want with your house and land.

TRENDING ON MADAMENOIRE
Comment Disclaimer: Comments that contain profane or derogatory language, video links or exceed 200 words will require approval by a moderator before appearing in the comment section. XOXO-MN