If you are in the market for a home and haven't considered a condo, maybe you should. Condo living straddles the line between a home and an apartment, and this type of living arrangement is just perfect for some people. Read on to find out both the pros and cons of buying and living in a condominium.
Pro: You'll be close to your neighbors and feel a sense of community that's hard to duplicate in many neighborhoods nowadays. You can't help but run into others that live in your building when you share a pool, elevator, parking areas, and so on. Better yet, many condo communities make it a point to offer a nice variety of social gatherings, tours, transportation, and other opportunities to meet and socialize with your neighbors.
Con: If you are an introvert and value your privacy, condo living might offer too much in the way of interaction with neighbors. Unfortunately, if you happen to dislike a neighbor, it can be difficult to avoid running into them if you live in a condo environment. For those who get all the social interaction they like in other ways, you may be happier in a single-family home.
Pro: Condos can provide a lot more home for your dollar. According to the folks at Trulia, the affordability of condos makes them a hot market choice, and they are appreciating faster than single-family homes in some places.
Con: Be sure to know about the extra costs associated with owning a condo before you sign on the dotted line. Ask about association dues, which can run into the thousands if your condo has a lot of amenities like a workout room, pool, walking paths, and more. Association fees are often due on a monthly or quarterly basis and are a serious legal obligation that is non-negotiable.
Pro: Think of all the free time you'll have when yard work and outside maintenance chores simply disappear. Condo owners are usually tasked with taking care of only the inside of a unit and not the outside, which can mean more free time. Additionally, the professional lawn care that the condominium association pays for will keep the common areas looking nice and tidy at all times, which raises the value of your home should you decide to sell. If snow falls and ice forms, your walks are kept clear without any effort on your part.
Con: People who love to work in their yard, flower beds, and vegetable gardens may feel lost without those fulfilling hobbies in a condo. Unless your green thumb can be put to use in a community garden or by container gardening on your balcony, you may be happier in a single-family home with a yard you can tend to.
Speak to your real estate agent to see if you should find a home in a condominium complex.