Real Estate

Should I Buy a Condo, Co-op or Townhome?

David Saba
David Saba
5 minutes to read.

Most people look at owning a home as an investment, but for others, it is nothing more than a financial sinkhole. Homes require a great deal of upkeep to maintain their property value. Many people are surprised at how quickly homeownership gets expensive.

For some people, building equity in a home is not worth the continual frustration of managing a home. For others, the idea of limited responsibility is very attractive. If you aren’t exactly handy, live in an urban city, or ultimately desire more financial freedom than a condo, co-op, or townhome may be a better solution than homeownership.

People of all ages and backgrounds find a housing co-op or group is more suitable to their lifestyle. Shouldering the full responsibility of a home on your shoulders is not for everyone. If you can relate, it is time to sell your home and buy a condo, co-op, or townhome.

What is Involved in Buying a Condo, Co-op, or Townhome

The idea of buying a condo, co-op, or townhome can be intimidating. In reality, each is a step between renting an apartment and owning a home. The amount of personal responsibility and freedom to renovate is what varies between levels. Assessing each option can help you find an investment property with fewer strings attached. Before you decide to buy a condo, co-op, or townhouse, take a closer look at each level of property ownership.

Buying a Co-op Property

Co-ops are becoming common in urban areas. According to the New York Times, California is estimated to be about 3.5 million homes short compared to its population. The most logical solution? Co-ops where residents own shares of a building to create high-density housing solutions.

Co-ops are a great way to jump out of the restraints of property ownership. If you choose to buy into a co-op you are giving a share of the property as a whole. In return, you receive a long-term lease. Usually, the lease is 50+ years, in other words until you want to leave. You will need to contribute yearly to a maintenance fund for overall maintenance issues in the building. However, you never have to deal with any of the actual tasks.

Since you buy all of your shares upfront, there will never be a rent hike. Your building share will hold its value so long as the co-op maintains itself. For this reason, you want to make sure the co-op manager is strong and effective. The downside, you can use all amenities and access the grounds, but you can’t customize your unit. You will also have to live by the board’s rules, which may or may not be in line with your preferences.

You will need to pay your share upfront, but if you sell your house the number shouldn’t daunting. Not sure if you want to give up that much of your freedom? Then slide up the property scale towards a condo.

Get a cash offer for your house

We are not able to determine an offer price right now.

A local investor will get in touch with you to discuss the sale of your house.

What is Involved in Buying a Condo

Buying a condo is much like buying a home. You will need to pay a mortgage and pay property taxes, but after paying a monthly upkeep fee you won’t have to worry about the upkeep of any communal areas. Usually, this means the grounds and amenities around your condo and the upkeep of the exterior of your condo.

You will be responsible for any repairs inside of your home and basic maintenance, but in exchange, you can customize your unit. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, of the 5 million existing condo units in the US, almost half of them were built within the last 30 years. Essentially this means that you shouldn’t have to worry about major repairs.

The downside, you will have condo association fees and you have to follow the association rules. Essentially, if you are ready to buy a condo, co-op, or townhome you will need to get used to the idea of housing associations. If it bothers you, jump on the HOA board and voice your opinion.

Buying a Townhome

Ready to sell your home but not ready to give up all the freedom of homeownership? If you primarily just want to downsize, a townhome might be the next logical step for you. Townhomes are essentially the same as single-family homes, there is simply a wall dividing you and your neighbor instead of a yard. In some cases, you may also own the lot on your side of the townhouse.

If you are looking to buy a condo, co-op, or townhome consider the fact that with a townhome you need to pay a mortgage, property tax, and the monthly association fee for communal area upkeep. You may give up a small degree of privacy, but in exchange will never have to worry about exterior maintenance or grounds upkeep. If you live in a snowy area, you can also stay warm and toasty while your HOA fees pay for snow shoveling.

Get a cash offer for your house

We are not able to determine an offer price right now.

A local investor will get in touch with you to discuss the sale of your house.

Get Cash in Hand to Buy a Condo, Co-op, or Townhome With SellHouseFast

Whether you decide on a condo, co-op, or townhome you will need cash in hand before moving into your next phase of property ownership. Selling your house can help make the decision to buy a condo, co-op or townhome easier. Contact SellHouseFast today to find out how much you can sell your house for today. SellHouseFast offers quick estimates and purchases homes based on your timeline so that you can buy the property of your dreams now.

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