“My wife and I love condos, both investing in condos and living in condos,” says Geoff Lilienfeld, a real estate agent with The Kay-Grant Group on Arizona. “When we take our clients out to look at purchasing condos we make sure that they’re fully aware of some of the things that can make or break how happy you are with your decision that you purchased that condo.”
By no means is a condo a perfect solution, but for some people, it offers distinct advantages over owning a home. Here are a few of those advantages:
- Low Maintenance
Perhaps the biggest benefit of owning a condo is that it requires far less maintenance than a house or other piece of real estate.
“As a first-time homebuyer, it’s enough to get your arms around the internal furnishings and such and a relief that you don’t need to worry about landscaping, yard maintenance and physical labor activities like snowplowing and road maintenance and roof repair,” says Sandra Rodriguez, who has spent time living in both condos and single-family homes.
You’ll pay dues to the condominium association and they’ll take care of almost everything for you. When you consider that many homeowners spend thousands of dollars a year on landscaping and upkeep, there are advantages to not having to take care of this on your own.
- Access to Amenities
Depending on the condominium complex, you may find state of the art amenities right at your fingertips. It’s not uncommon to see things like pools, fire pits, grilling stations, dog parks, pet-washing stations, fitness centers, and even putting greens, basketball courts, and tennis courts at some of the newest developments. This can be a major benefit if you use amenities like these frequently.
- Good Location
While not always true, condos tend to be located in very convenient areas. They’re typically in the heart of the city, which allows for easy walking distance to restaurants, entertainment, and possibly even your job. When you combine this with the amenities you have in the complex, your life gets a lot simpler.
- Sense of Community
In a neighborhood, it’s not always easy to get to know people. Depending on how close houses sit and what sort of schedule you have, you might rarely see neighbors. However, in a condo, you’re literally steps away from other people. This can provide a healthy sense of community.
You can spend more on a condo than a house, but in general, condos are more affordable. Square footage is maximized and you aren’t paying for as much real estate. You also get the cost savings associated with not having to do as much maintenance and being in a more convenient location. You’ll have to crunch your own numbers to see if it makes sense in your situation – but many people find it does.
Calling a Condo Home
If you’ve never lived in a condo, then you may have preconceived notions of what it looks like. In many cases, these perceptions are wrong. At the very least, you should add condos to your house-hunting search and check out a few in your area. You may find what others have found – they’re affordable, convenient, and packed with amenities.