If you have been shopping for a home, you’ve likely seen the terms condo and townhome come up. While the dwellings may be visually similar in many cases, there are key differences between them. If you’re considering purchasing a townhome or condo, it helps to consider the pros and cons of each before you make your decision. In this blog, we’ll help explain the differences between the two kinds of homes and lay out some elements to consider in choosing which is right for you.
What’s the Difference Between a Townhome and Condo?
A condo could be thought of like an apartment, but you can own it instead of only renting. Condos are usually in a building or community with similar units side by side. You can only own the interior of a condo, while the community residents share the exterior and common spaces. Residents contribute to a homeowner’s association (HOA) that covers necessary upkeep and insurance for anything outside the unit.
A townhome is a type of architecture. Like a condo, it has shared walls, but townhomes tend to be multi level more often than a condo. If you own your townhome, you own the interior, exterior and land on which the home sits. Similar to a condo, townhomes typically come with HOA fees.
Pros of a Condo
- Less Maintenance: Unlike a townhome, the exterior of a condo is not your responsibility. You don’t have to worry about fixing your roof or mowing your lawn on a weekend.
- Less Expensive: Condos tend to cost less than townhomes, but can be comparable in size. You’ll also be paying less for home insurance. Rates are usually lower for condos because owners only have to insure the interior of their unit.
- Great Amenities: With a condo, owners usually have more perks like the pools, gyms, dog parks, clubhouses, business centers, etc. There is often a greater community focus, as well
Cons of a Condo
- Higher HOA: Because condos share more maintenance and HOAs can increase to cover deficits or poor planning, HOA fees for Condos are usually higher than for Townhomes.
- Less Privacy: Community living can be great, but it also tends to reduce privacy to have so many shared spaces.
- Smaller: Condos tend to have less living space than Townhomes.
- More Rules: HOAs are great for keeping a community visually appealing and in order, but they also tend to come with more rules for condo dwellers than townhome owners.
Pros of a Townhome
- More Space: Townhomes usually have more square footage than condos and also tend to be multi-level more often.
- Better Resale: Townhomes will usually appreciate more than condos.
- Greater Freedom and Privacy: With less powerful HOAs and less common space, townhome owners are able to do more with their property and enjoy more privacy than condo owners.
- Lower HOA: Townhome owners don’t see as much fluctuation in HOA fees, nor do they pay for surprise assessments like condo owners.
Cons of a Townhome
- More Work: Because you own the exterior, it is your responsibility to repair and take care of elements like your yard and roof.
- Fewer Amenities: Townhomes tend to have fewer perks than robust condo communities.
- Higher Price: On the whole, townhomes will have a higher price tag than condos.
We Can Help
The decision as to whether a condo or townhome is right for you is a wholly personal one based on your lifestyle and needs. No matter what kind of property you are looking for, though, we can help you get the mortgage you need. If you’d like to learn more, or have any questions, reach out to us at (877) 699-0353. We look forward to helping you get your dream home.