In your search for the right home, you will likely be doing a lot of footwork and analysis. Before you begin looking at actual homes, it is wise to determine how much home you can afford and the level of maintenance you desire. In doing so, you may find that the new home that best fits you is not a traditional single family house, but instead a home in a planned community or a condominium.
Your location, city or suburbs, is largely determined by your lifestyle and occupational needs. Cost is always as factor, as well, since living in the city often means less space for the same amount of money. Less space may lead to you exploring the condominium home market and the benefits and challenges that condo life introduces to home ownership.
When buying a condo, you often need to consider Homeowner Association (HOA) fees as you will be sharing the costs of overall property maintenance, along with the decision making power to make any changes on the property. For this reason it is extremely important that you review all Homeowners Association bylaws before making a condominium or planned community purchase.
Ask yourself these questions – to determine what type of property you value most.
- Proximity – Where do spend your time? Where do you want to live? What type of housing is available in that location in your price range?
- Neighbors – Would you prefer them to share your walls or need more separation? Would you prefer more privacy than condo life can offer?
- Control – Do you like to share control over home matters or be the final authority? Do you care if you need to ask permission before making a change to your deck or paint?
- Upkeep – Do you like the idea of a garden or would you rather never weed again? Yard maintenance handled by an association is a prime benefit for many condo owners.
- Price – Can you afford the home? If there are association fees, are they reasonable?
Whichever type of home you decide to pursue, asking these questions will help you feel secure in the knowledge that your new home is suited to you and your specific needs. Happy house hunting!