LakeUnion

House vs. Condo

Sometimes people are faced with the choice between living in a condo or a house. The choice is not always necessarily easy. So, to help, we've established the following to help in your thought process and considerations between the two.

Condos

Seattle Condo
    Pros
  • Upkeep:
    In general, condo's offer a less rigorous upkeep of your home. There is usually no yardwark or home-maintenance responsiblities. Unless you enjoy doing housework or yard-work, having a maintenance crew take care of the upkeep is a welcome relief.
  • Location:
    A condo provides residents with a home inside the city. This means that for those that work in the city, there is often less of a commute, and you are closer to more of the downtown action. Many urban condos are within easy walking distance to grocery stores, restaurants, cafe's, shops, and movie theaters. This is a good thing for those that walk, but, traffic might become an issue in highly congested urban areas if you have somewhere to go in your vehicle.


  • Cons
  • Home Owner's Association Dues
    Most condominiums charge monthly maintenance Home Owners Association dues. The money that is earned through these monthly fees is used to develop the property and pay for the collective upkeep. In some cases, these dues, along with the mortgage, can add up to more per month than it would cost for a house of equal value.
  • Shared Decision-Making:
    All of the decisions made about the condo are done through the condominium board. You may at times find that the dues you are paying are going towards things that you may not use or use often. For example maintenance of an exotic garden that you never visit or construction of a fountain that you may feel is a waste of funds. Also any renovations you would like to do must go through and be approved by the board.


Houses

A house in Seattle
    Pros
  • Family Friendly:
    Houses tend to be more family friendly as they generally tend to have yards and usually more square footage. A house is also yours and you can make any decisions you would like without getting approval from a board or committee. (Unless you're married, then it's the same. (Kidding)) A house also allows the option of having pets, which may not be something available in a condominium.
  • Living Space:
    Houses tend to have more living space. Not only do children need space, but most adults do too. A house will allow you to designate private rooms where individuals can go if they need time alone. Also a house will give you the option of potentially having room specifically designated for work, play, or hobbies.


  • Cons
  • Upkeep:
    Owning a home is an investment. Unless you hire someone, most of the cleaning, maintenance, and upkeep will be up to you. The larger the property and square footage the more time it will take to keep the home maintained and clean. You may end up sinking a good amount of money into the home and property. However, in the long run, any improvements and investments you make in the property be it time or money, will usually pay off in the long run in terms of resale value.
  • More Items:
    With more space, you will need more items to fill the space. This could mean more pictures to hang on the wall, more furniture, more... stuff. In some cases this is not too detrimental if you plan to stay in the home for awhile. This includes tools for gardening, a lawn mower, weedwhacker and any other myriad of items a home needs. More items mean an greater intial cost of the home.

Depends On You!

Happy couple buying a new home
  • Privacy:
    Some people prefer their privacy. In this case a house may be a better choice. However, some people prefer the close quarters of a condominium. This is attractive for people who are social in nature and enjoy the comraderee of close neighbors.
  • Noise:
    A noisy neighbor can be hard to deal with. In a house you usually have some semblance of separation from noise from your neighbors, however, in a condo it's more difficult. Unless a quiet hour is established by the board this may be difficult to overcome.

Regardless of the information and views provided here, it is still important to do your research and decide what works best for you as an individual, or what works best for you and your family. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or require advice or guidance.



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