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Should you buy a condo or a house?

House key with home keyring in keyhole on wood door, copy space

There are numerous decisions to be made when buying a new home. One of these decisions is whether or not you should buy a condo or a house. In order to make the right decision, you will need to understand the pros and cons of each.

Here’s a look at each type of property to help you decide.

Condo

A condo is a large complex of living spaces, usually broken into individual units, that is shared with others. Condos also often have facilities such as pools, gyms, and restaurants that are shared by other residents of the complex. Condos are often located around popular destinations like spas, malls, restaurants, stadia, and interesting places that meet your lifestyle choices.

One of the biggest pros of buying a condo is that they cost less. This enables people to afford a home in downtown areas where property prices would otherwise be unaffordable. Of course, price differences will vary according to where you are, but the median price of single-family homes in Florida, for example, is around $205,000, whereas condos have a median price of around $1345,000.

Another benefit of living in a condo is that the building and its facilities are maintained by the condo’s association. This condo association does charge a fee, however, and this can have an impact on the overall cost, potentially making a condo just as expensive as a home. Shop around, however, and you should be able to bring that cost down.

House

Owning a house is everyone’s dream, as you truly have a place to call home. A home to host dinners and a yard to share a barbecue with a couple of friends on a Saturday afternoon is highly desirable for many people.

Houses are generally larger than condos, making them more suitable for families. You also have more freedom because you own the structure so you can do what you want with it, within reason. (Just check if you need planning permission).

You can also have as many pets as you like, whereas condos will often not allow any at all, except for one dog (depending on the breed) and maybe a few fish. You are also likely to have more than just a thin wall between you and your neighbors, meaning you can turn the sound up when watching movies late at night without bothering anybody else.

All this comes at a cost, though. As highlighted above, the median price of a house is somewhat higher than condos. On top of that, you have repairs and maintenance to take into account and this can offset some of the fees you would otherwise pay to a condo association. The higher overall costs of houses mean that many people look for homes in the suburbs where prices are generally lower, although this may not be practical for a lot of people that work downtown.

Summary

Overall, choosing a house or a condo boils down to personal preferences and your budget.

If having a place to truly call your own with enough space to raise a family is important to you, then a house would likely be your best option. You might need to be prepared to make compromises in terms of location, though, and you should also be prepared to handle maintenance and repairs yourself.

If location, convenience, and cost are important to you, then a condo may be your best option. While a condo has benefits over owning a house, though, they will come at the cost of more space and more privacy.

Still can’t decide? If you’re moving to Southern Florida, let the Connie Cabral Group help by showing you your real estate options. Call us at 305.776.0899 or send an email to Connie(at)ConnieCabral(dotted)com.