The time has come for that grand purchase of yours – but you’re still indecisive about which one you should go for? Condo vs House, the infinite battlegrounds. This article will not be able to tell you what’s better for you. This article will, however, be able to help you make discern some pros and cons for both based on which you’ll reach your decision easily. The most important thing is the fact that you should chose the one that makes you feel at home, be it condo or a house.
Condo vs House – Which is Which?
The most common misconception is when people believe that the only difference between the two is whether the home has a yard or not. Whilst this is true, this is far from being the only factor making the difference. The article will cover these differences (and their pros and cons), and hopefully based on that you’ll have an easier time reaching your decision.
Houses have very distinctive features that make them appealing to future home owners. As mentioned at the beginning, houses have a private yard. Even though it isn’t the only difference between the two, it is a major one. When having that house vs condo debate this becomes a high priority factor. But with that private yard comes more responsibility as any outdoor maintenance becomes your responsibility. Since we’re bouncing pros and cons back and forth, in spite of the additional responsibilities comes infinite freedom to arrange or rearrange anything however you see fit. This gives you the freedom to repaint if you wish, place a new mailbox or put in 50 garden gnomes.
On top of all this there are no condo fees. You can invest however you see fit, and in whichever order you see fit – but any additional expenses that may occur are on you. This also adds the fact that you will be responsible for all insurance costs. Aside from all this we are reaching the most fundamental difference in my book. The one difference that makes all the difference. You have absolute control (within the limits of the law) of what you do to your property.
In contrast to a house, a condo does give you complete freedom (within the law) of what you can do to the interior. However, any changes you were to make outside would require permission from the condo board. This does limit your freedom for a great deal, when compared to houses. To some, this would resolve the condo vs house dilemma. To others this might not make such a huge difference.
On the bright side, living in a condo removes some of the responsibilities you face as a house owner. There is a monthly condo fee that you must pay, but this fee covers some of the responsibilities you would be normally in charge of. This includes any type of exterior maintenance (even snow removal and landscaping). At least one thing less to think about!
Insurance is included as part of your condo fee, hence it becomes one less thing to think about. However, you do still need your own personal insurance for any personal (interior) valuables and possessions. This is in many ways just like renters insurance.
Which one should you choose?
Nobody but you will have the answer to this one. The one mistake people tend to make is not think about it long enough to be able to reach a proper decision. The bottom line of the answer to this question is based on your lifestyle. If you have a large family and are wishing to settle in, have a huge yard where the kids could run about (and where you can install a small swimming pool in the summer) – then condo will not really be your go-to. Again, if you wish to own property on which you have absolute control and the decision making power – condo will not be your cup of tea.
However, if you’re a businessman with a very busy schedule you wish to minimize home management time. You’d want to simplify your living arrangements by having zero yards to look after and snow to plow. If this is a yes then you’d want to own a condo. The amount of responsibilities the house brings makes you anxious and intimidates you? – a condo will be your thing. If your budget is not yet ready for a house – a condo will be your second best bet. Nobody said you can’t upgrade to a house later on!
Basically the victor of the condo vs house battle is usually residing in the lifestyle you are living. It’s more like lifestyle you want vs lifestyle you need. This is why only you can answer this question.
Additional Condo Limitations
As previously stated, condos allow for much flexibility and lack of responsibility when it comes to all sorts of maintenance. However, this does come at a price. Not only do you not have full decision making power for many changes you’d want to put into place – you also have additional limitations that very from building to building. These limitations can be the following:
- Pet Limitations
- Age Restrictions
- Rental Permissions
Some condo buildings will simply not allow you to own a pet. And this may be an absolute deal breaker to some, wheres other people maybe never wanted a pet in the first place. But to those who already own a cat or a dog (or an armadillo) this is a no-go from the start. Other restrictions such as age or rental permissions can also be a deal breaker from the very start, and are parameters that one must keep in mind. This might resolve your condo vs house battle very quickly. Condos do provide you with a peace of mind – but at a price!