While location, location, location is important, you should also consider the question of what works best for you: home, townhouse or condo?
When many people start contemplating buying a house, they usually think of the traditional four walls, a roof, and maybe a yard. However, for some individuals, a house may not be the most practical of options.
For example, a house requires all kinds upkeep and not only inside but outside, too. If there’s an outside area you’ll be responsible for cutting the lawn, trimming bushes, and maintaining the flowers, pruning, raking and everything else that goes with keeping up a yard. Also, the outside of the house will need care including painting, the repair of roofing, windows, doors and more.
A townhome on the flip side may been as less maintenance overall. The neighborhood or the Homeowners Association (HOA) may hire a local contractor to maintain the exterior that would include all the above leaving you more time to devote to the inside of the townhouse.
A contractor that performs these services is usually paid out of the HOA’s fees that as a homeowner you would pay monthly or quarterly depending on each HOA’s rules and regulations. You will still be personally responsible for the exterior of the home, however. You could be limited in the choices of its exterior treatments, i.e. paint colors, adding additions, spa, etc., to the townhouse and you may have to get permission with the HOA.
For a lot of people, especially those in larger cities, a condo is the only option. A condo may provide you with the convenience and low maintenance costs of an apartment with the pride of ownership of a house. Your condo association fees will most likely be used to pay for maintenance of the building’s exterior and common areas, including stairways, lobbies and garage/or parking areas. You as the condo owner will be responsible for maintaining the interior of your living space, including appliances and in more current buildings, heat pumps or other heating and cooling devices like air conditioning.
Most neighborhoods and suburbs have an ample variety of available and affordable homes, condos or townhomes you can choose from. After you have reviewed the information needed about the location you like and determined the house values seem to be in your price range, you are ready to take the next logical step and that’s to find the perfect dwelling for you and your family.
Whether you are single person or a family unit, buying a home is an emotional process and can be stressful, too. However, even though you may experience these possible ups and downs, do try and be realistic about the facts you are encountering about the said property. Keep in mind that getting cold feet is a normal reaction for such an important life decision.
On a side not, it may behoove you to look for a qualified Realtor who could help show you properties, as well as walk you through the home buying process from A to Z once you make your final decision.