You’ve finally reached the point in your life when you’re ready to buy a home. What type of home should you choose? Single-family detached residences, condos, townhomes, and multi-family units are all options for homebuyers. Here are the pros and cons of each.
Single-Family Detached Home
This is the traditional house with a yard and a picket fence. What makes this type of home so attractive, and what are the pitfalls?
There are many advantages to traditional home ownership, including:
- You own the land, the home, and everything else on the property
- Traditional home loans are typically the easiest to qualify for
- You’ll have the widest range of home loans to choose from
- Customizing home design and decor are up to you
- You’ll have some space for neighbors
On the downside, a “regular house” can cause some headaches, such as:
- You’re 100% responsible for home upkeep, maintenance, and repairs, inside and out
- You can end up in the suburbs far from amenities and city lifestyle
- It might be difficult to find a smaller house in good condition
It’s like apartment living, except you own the apartment. Here’s why people love and hate condo life:
Condo dwellers tend to be enamored with the idea of stress free home ownership:
- You never have to worry if the roof is damaged or the grass needs cutting
- Insurance can be cheaper for a condo than a house
- You might have access to extra amenities, like a community building, a gym, or a pool
However, there are drawbacks to living in condos and it’s not always a paradise:
- Homeowners association (HOA) fees can be stiff
- Poorly managed condos can mean hefty out of pocket costs
- Condos can be harder to sell when you’re ready to move on
- Building renovations or repairs can result in large assessments that must be paid by the owners in the condo.
If you want something between a house and a condominium, a townhouse could be your best bet.
Townhomes deliver the full homeowner experience with the community feel of a condo complex, with these added perks:
- You’ll have neighbors to each side of you, but none above or below you
- Square footage can be more than a condo with multi-level flexibility
- Small footprint townhouses are accessible in areas where real estate is costly
Townhomes can be a non-option if you love lots of space and few neighbors and hate HOAs:
- While you may have a yard, it’s not likely to be much bigger than a postage stamp
- You’ll still have HOA fees, even though you own your entire property
- Townhomes aren’t necessarily cheaper than a house, it depends on the area
Finally, you can try house hacking with a multi-family property if you want to invest real estate, have a place to live, and get most of your mortgage paid for you:
- A multi-family property has two to four units so you can live in one and rent out the rest
- You can often collect rents that cover your mortgage for the entire property
- You’ll still be able to qualify for primary residence interest rates if you live in one unit
- You may not enjoy being a landlord, and your tenants will always be right there
- If you can find tenants, vacants units can be a drain instead of a revenue source
- Multi-family properties appreciate in value more slowly than single-family homes
Making the decision about what kind of property to purchase will largely depend on your personal lifestyle habits and preferences. Your Loan Officer can help you with loan types and structure to help you find the mortgage solution that is best for your final choice.
Your Sammamish Mortgage Loan Officer Can Help You Start the Preapproval Process Today!
We’ve fine-tuned the preapproval process to make it one of the easiest experiences you’ll have in the whole home buying process. Buying a home should be fun and exciting, not stressful. Get preapproved today!
Sammamish Mortgage has been in business since 1992, and has assisted many home buyers in the Pacific Northwest. If you are looking for mortgage financing in Washington State, we can help. Sammamish Mortgage offers mortgage programs in Colorado, Idaho, Oregon and Washington.
Contact us if you have any mortgage-related questions or concerns. If you are ready to move forward, you can view rates, obtain a customized instant rate quote, or apply instantly directly from our website.