Townhouse Vs. Condominium Ownership

Tuesday, July 18, 2017  


Townhouses and condominiums are often more affordable than single-family freestanding homes for home buyers looking to purchase their first home, but HOA fees can get high for communities with lost of amenties. Empty-nesters and retirees looking to downsize should consider the minimal maintenance and single level living that a condo provides while keeping in mind that convenience sometimes comes with a cost, i.e. the HOA and maintenance fees.

 

 

Condo

Townhouse

Description

A building or community of buildings in which units are owned by individuals, rather than a landlord. Buildings often provide more amenities that townhouse communities.

Conjoined units owned by individuals. Often have a small backyard and feel more like living in a house. It’s common to share at least one wall and have two or more stories.

 

Ownership

Condo owners only own the interior of their unit. All other areas, including the building exterior, lawn and communal areas, are property of the Homeowners Association (HOA).

In most townhome communities, owners own their unit’s interior and exterior, including the roof, lawn and driveway, but not the communal areas.

Homeowners Association Fees

HOA fees for condos are typically higher than townhouses because they pay for exterior upkeep, such as lawn care, trash removal and pest control.

 

Townhouse owners pay lower monthly HOA fees because they pay for much of their own upkeep. Some maintenance and trash removal are still handled by the HOA.

Home Insurance Rates

Home insurance rates are usually lower for condos because owners have to insure only the interior of their unit.

 

Townhouses may have higher home insurance rates, since most owners need insurance to cover both the exterior and interior.

 

Maintenance Fees

Condo owners often pay higher monthly maintenance fees, to cover exterior and community space repairs.

Townhome owners typically have lower monthly maintenance fees, but pay more out of pocket for exterior and interior care.

 



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