Property tastes vary based on the individual buyer. As many people that like a particular property feature there are an equal number who are opposed to it. The same is the case when it comes to purchasing a condominium. A condo is a unique type of property that is not for everyone. Those that like condo living swear they would not have it any other way. For others it does not fit with their view of homeownership. Like most things in real estate there are pros and cons with everything you do. Here are a few pros and cons of purchasing a condominium.
Property Maintenance.One of the biggest adjustments that new homeowners have is in maintaining their property. In addition to the cost of a new lawnmower, snow blower, rake, shovel and other items it is often much more time consuming than anticipated. With a condo these items are typically covered in the association fees. Your lawn will be mowed and your driveway shoveled. You will pay for these every month but you will never have to do them as long as you own your unit.
Amenities. Condominiums that have the highest demand typically offer the best amenities. These can be anything from 24 hour security to a community pool. All amenities are covered in the association fees and not the owner’s responsibility to care for.
Price. On average most condominiums are less expensive than single family homes in the area. There are always exceptions to the rule but generally speaking you can enjoy the benefits of home ownership at a reduced point of entry.
Association rules and fees. Even though you are the owner of a condo you still need to adhere to the rules of the association. For starters there are monthly fees paid whether you plan on using any of the amenities or not. You also need to be cognizant of any policies that are in the association bylaws. Some of these ranges from the color you can paint your deck to whether or not you can hang a flag over your garage. Most of the rules are non-descript but need to be recognized and followed nevertheless.
Parking. If you are someone who likes to host, owning a condo may not be for you. There are many different types of sizes of condominium complexes ranging from a dozen to five hundred units. A common theme is typically the lack of parking associated. Even units with a two car garage and a driveway may not offer much excess parking. The space is typically at a first come first serve basis and once the lot is full you may be scrambling to find an alternative.
Privacy. A condo does not offer the privacy of a single family home on a quiet cul-de-sac. Most condo units are crammed right on top of the next one. Not only is there minimal yard space there is little to no privacy. It is not uncommon to hear noisy neighbors in an adjacent unit.
Condominium complexes can be as different as driving from one part of town to another. Most of them offer different styles, layouts, amenities and rules. Like any potential purchase you make you should educate yourself on exactly what you are buying.