Condo vs. House vs. Multi-Unit: Which is right for you?
Whether you’re a first-time home buyer just starting your search or looking to move up the property ladder, you’ve likely considered what type of home is best for you. While condos and single-family homes (SFH) are most often top of mind, especially if you’re popping into open houses to scope out the market, another option could be a multi-unit building; but which one is right for you?
There are pros and cons to each type of home, and it’s important to explore all three before you take the leap!
Condos are often considered by homebuyers for a variety of reasons – they tend to cost less than their SFH counterparts in the same neighborhood as well as have the benefit of sharing maintenance/costs with other owners in the building and lower homeowner’s insurance. Condos are the perfect housing option for those who love the urban lifestyle but don’t want to take on sole responsibility of maintaining a home. The main drawback to buying a condo is having to pay a monthly fee to the homeowner’s association which can vary based on the building (more amenities = higher HOA fees), and although that fee goes towards typical expenses and reserves, it can really add to your monthly costs. Additionally, you share walls with your neighbors, for better or worse, and have to follow the rules set forth by the Association (no raising chickens in a condo!).
Purchasing a single-family home is often the next step for someone who owns a condo and craves more space and privacy. Unlike condos, a single-family homeowner has more flexibility in what is done with the property and will have more space both inside and out as well as increased privacy from your neighbors. Drawbacks include sole responsibility for all of the home’s maintenance and higher homeowner’s insurance, but you (typically) will not have a monthly Association fee which can offset the monthly costs. A single-family home is the perfect option for a buyer who wants complete flexibility with making the home their own, doesn’t want to deal with Association rules/restrictions, and more indoor/outdoor space.
Purchasing and living in a multi-unit building combines some of the best aspects of a condo and SFH while also allowing you to live “rent free”. As the owner of a multi-unit building, you will not pay an HOA fee, and you can create your own rules for tenants to follow as well as have the ability to have the rental income cover your own mortgage and associated monthly expenses. Of course, owning a building comes with the same maintenance responsibilities as with a single-family home, you will become a landlord, which is not for everyone, and you’ll still have to share walls and common areas with your tenants. However, it is a wonderful opportunity for the investment-savvy homeowner!
Interested in finding out more? Contact us today!