If you’re looking cheap condo for sale, now may be an exceptional time since interest rates are at historic lows while the inventory of condos is at historic highs. However, before you decide to begin shopping for that new condo you may wonder what the advantages are of purchasing a condo versus purchasing a single family home. The answer isn’t so simple because it depends greatly on your stage of life, goals, standard of living, and personality.
If you’re up for living as part of a community condos are an attractive investment. Having a shared interest in a community sums up the definition of a condominium. Although you have ownership rights to your individual unit you do have to share in with the condo association who manages, maintains, and governs the complex. You, as an owner will be responsible for everything within your unit, but everything outside of your unit, such as a lawn, snow removal, landscaping, or trash removal will all be handled by your association. Things such as major mechanical, roofing, and hallway maintenance will also be standard issues the condo association will handle, rather than you directly.
Having the association deal with these major problems brings about the major advantage of owning a condo. Convenience! However, since you’re part of a group you’ll have more pressure to fit the mold and avoid any major renovations to your unit or adding your unit personality to the building. Although there are a few downsides to purchasing a condo there are several advantages which include:
1. Lower MaintenanceIf you’re too busy, too overwhelmed, or simply too lazy to handle any property maintenance such as lawn mowing or snow removal this is the right place for you. The association outsources or directly hires who do all the maintenance of the property so you can simply enjoy your unit without the headaches association with single family ownership.
2. Lower purchase priceYou’ll probably get more bang for your buck with a condo versus a single family home. This means they’re a great choice for those buyers who are price conscious and want to squeeze every last penny out of their purchase. The National Association of Realtors noted that the difference between average condo price was $51,000 in Chicago during 2007 and just slightly less for Milwaukee condos just to the north. In larger metro areas such as New York and San Diego the difference in average price reached six digits!
3. Smaller property taxesSince the taxes you pay on your property are based off how much you paid for your unit you’ll have a smaller tax burden. The savings can add to several hundred, (or thousand depending on where you live) which can be a significant amount. Perhaps enough for that vacation every year.
4. Easier access to luxury and exclusivityPurchasing a house on an exclusive piece of beach property is going to cost you a ton of money. But if you build a condo complex on that same lot the land cost is spread over all the owners, which means that everyone can enjoy the beach property. Although you won’t have as much privacy, you’ll be able to get access to more exclusive areas without the huge price tag.
5. More amenitiesFitness facilities, swimming pools, shared common areas, and meeting areas are all some of the standard amenities you can expect in larger condo communities. You don’t have to buy a separate gym membership or get into your car to get to the pool down at the YMCA. These amenities can be right in your backyard.
6. Increased securityWith security access to most condo communities you’ll have increased peace of mind. Some condo facilities offer video surveillance and elite communities offer security on site. However, don’t forget that you’ll have several neighbors close by that will also keep an eye on your place as well.
7. Great social lifeHaving many neighbors in the same building will mean that you’ll eventually bump into them either at the gym, the pool, or just doing your laundry. The association meetings will also give you a chance to meet new people. Hopefully you end up getting along with them all!
So there you have it. There are several advantages of owning a condo that you won’t be able to find in single family living. If you like greater security, amenities, and a community atmosphere, condo living may be for you.