Condo vs Apartment vs Townhouse: What's the Difference?

Posted by Casandra Properties on Friday, December 11th, 2020 at 7:41pm.

December is here, the best month for anyone who wishes to get a nice home for less. 

Research shows that some of the best house discounts and deals come towards the end of the year. The month features cold weather, which means very few individuals are house hunting. Also, people are busy with holiday preparations, and moving houses is not a priority. 

These variations translate to a buyers’ market, and with the right planning and excellent bargaining skills, the right time to own your dream home is now. Understanding the differences between a condo vs apartment vs townhouse helps you weigh the pros and cons of each and make a sound decision.

In this article, we help you understand their main differences. 

Condo vs Apartment vs Townhouse

Condos

Simply put, a condominium or condo is defined as a large structure divided into small units for sale. The words condo and apartment have been used interchangeably for a long time. While the two look nearly alike from an aesthetic perspective, they are different in terms of residents’ legal status.

In condos, the residents acquire full ownership of the units by purchasing. They may also obtain a mortgage for the structures to at least acquire part of the condominium.

Note that apartment owners cannot acquire ownership of the house structures. They only buy ownership of the airspace making up the units. Everything else, such as the four walls of the units, exterior parts of the structure, and anything else outside the individual units, is possessed by the owner.

Pros of a Condo

Minimal Maintenance: The main advantage of acquiring a condo is that a significant part of maintenance is covered. HOA takes care of major repairs such as fixing the roof and compound maintenance. This is not only a money-saving benefit, but also, condos are perfect for busy individuals, seniors, or those with disabilities.

Property Appreciation: The value of condos has been rising steadily over the past years. If you wish to invest in a property and resell it later, this is the perfect option for you.

Convenient Location: Condominiums are mostly located near the city or are surrounded by necessary amenities. If you love traveling or prefer commuting to work, you no longer have to worry about walking or driving for hours to access the main road.

Security Assurance: Condos are gated and guarded by security professionals. You can travel for days with peace of mind knowing that your property is intact. If you love going out at night, it is reassuring knowing that you are safe regardless of the time of the night when you get home. 

Cons of a Condo

Reselling a Condo is a Challenge: Despite the attractive appreciation, the HOA regulations on condos make the hard to resell.

Home Owners Association Fee: Condo owners are expected to pay an HOA fee to cater to property maintenance and future upgrades.

Goodbye Privacy: If you choose to live in a condo, forget about privacy. You have neighbors on each side of the wall, and you have to deal with all their shortcomings. 

Apartments

An apartment has a nearly similar definition as a condo, only that, in this case, you rent the space. Apartments are self-contained, fitted with all essentials, including housekeeping facilities. You have to pay rent to live in that space for a specified period as per the outlined terms.

The house owner retains full ownership of the property and everything in it. Apartments are a perfect choice for nomads and individuals who cannot afford to buy a house.

Pros of Apartments

Minimal Maintenance: A large part of apartment maintenance is covered by the property owner or corporate body. You no longer have to worry about a clogged drain or broken pipe. The landlord is also responsible for most non-structural maintenance.

Cost-Effective: Apartments are the best choice if you are operating on a tight budget. Besides the affordable house-paying plan, paying for other bills such as electricity, water and HVAC will cost you less.

Ideal for Single Persons: The small spaces are best-suited for single individuals such as students or people living away from their families due to work.

Cons of Apartments

No Privacy: Living in an apartment means getting used to the nosy and noisy neighbors. 

Small Spaces: Apartments are small, which can be hectic if you are living with your family.

Limited Personalization: Considering that you do not acquire possession over the unit, the extent to which you can modify the apartment to match your taste and preference is limited.

Town House

If you plan on buying a house, you may be contemplating purchasing a townhouse, but what is a townhouse? Also known as a row house, a townhouse is a house that shares one or more walls with adjacent properties. However, you enjoy the pleasure of having your driveway, backyard, and garage, depending on the location.

When comparing a condo vs. townhouse or apartment vs. townhouse, a townhouse is a winner in terms of privacy and space. You may choose to buy or rent a townhouse, but the property will be under the HOA regulations in both cases.

Pros of a Townhouse

Affordability: Townhouses are much affordable than detached houses, and you get to enjoy similar benefits. The price factor is because of the shared walls, which make townhouses cheaper to construct. 

Easy Maintenance: You only need to take care of interior maintenance. HOA covers everything else. 

Luxurious Amenities: Most townhouses feature common, luxury amenities such as swimming pools, playgrounds, tennis courts, and gym facilities for extra entertainment.

Privacy: When considering living in a condo vs. apartment vs. townhouse, a townhouse offers more privacy than the other two choices. You make your house rules, and you no longer have to worry about intruders. 

Cons of a Townhouse

HOA Regulations: The property is under the HOA association, and you are required to pay an expensive fee for maintenance and the future upkeep. 

If you're struggling to make a decision, know that you cannot go wrong by seeking the assistance of a real estate agency. They will offer guidance and ensure a fast home-searching process. 

Condo vs Apartment vs Townhouse: Which One Is the Right Home for You?

Studies have proven that apartment owners prefer smart home amenities over pools or an on-site gym. Nonetheless, if you are an outgoing person or love hanging out by the swimming pool as you bond with family or friends, you should consider a condo. If you are after a house that accepts specific pet breeds, a townhouse will do.

The right home option in condo vs apartment vs townhouse depends on your specific needs and budget. Be sure to understand the pros and cons of each before making a final decision. Also, get more ideas by reading our other blogs.

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