Are you debating on whether or not buying a condo is the right move for you in your next home purchase? Or maybe even your first home purchase. Let’s face it when it comes to shopping for a new place to call home, choosing the right one is one of the biggest decisions you can make in your daily life. If you’re living in Scottsdale, Phoenix, and Chandler, AZ, there are a number of great condo options to look at buying.
There are so many questions to be answered and so many things to consider when you’re deciding on which type of home to get. From the square footage to the location to the potential appreciation, the convenience, the amenities, the school district, and more, it’s important to consider all factors and options before making a decision. If you’re someone who works a lot and isn’t often home, you live alone, and you’re looking for more affordability, you may be asking, “Is a condo the right decision for me?” or “Why should I choose a condo over a house?” These are both great questions that require a deeper look.
Choosing a condo as your new home does have its pros and cons, however, AZ Deal Hunters is here to break everything down for you.
Pros of Buying a Condo
If you’re the type of person that prefers lower maintenance, the convenience of amenities, and affordability, the pros of buying a condo just might win over the cons. Let’s take an in-depth look at what these pros are:
Living in a condo frees you from exterior maintenance, as the condominium complex will take care of everything for you. Typically, they manage the landscaping, maintain the grounds, fix any exterior building issues, and are sometimes even around to assist with other needs. It’s helpful to have a professional that can give you a little guidance on some of the interior obstacles you may come across.
The low maintenance option is a great one for those who find themselves working a ton, spend a lot of time traveling, have health issues, or simply just dislike maintenance. If you’re never home, or you’re too tired to do any of the work that needs to be done on your property, living in a condo will solve that for you. It’s also important to consider the cost of the maintenance that you would be spending if you lived in a home. If you’re budget conscious and don’t want to fork out a chunk of money when the irrigation system goes haywire, a condo just might be the right move for you.
Access to Amenities
Another pro to living the condo life is that most condo complexes come with things like a pool, fitness center, a community clubhouse and more. Save money on gym memberships, invite your friends over to watch the big game without needing to prep your home, and lay next to a pool that you don’t need to take care of. All you need to do is walk right outside your door and you’re there.
Having access to convenient amenities will also save you money on gas to drive to other locations, money on memberships, and are just plain helpful. The average homeowner doesn’t have access to amenities like these unless they live in a community with a full community center. Even then, those typically require some sort of membership fee.
Most of the time, condominium complexes in Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Chandler are gated and require a security code to enter. Some condos even require a special key for access to all doors within the community or even have a doorman at the front door. Often times, especially at night, you will see a member of the security team walking around to monitor the grounds. If you are living alone or you’re concerned about security, living in a condo with precautionary measures in place might be a great idea.
Another perk is that there will always be tons of people around to assist you if you ever need help in an emergency situation. If there’s a security guard present, that’s an added bonus.
Although sometimes this isn’t necessarily the case depending on the condo or home you’re considering, condos are typically a more affordable purchase than buying a home. They are priced lower for a number of reasons and can be a great option for first time home buyers who aren’t quite ready to take the full leap.
In addition to the up-front cost of the condo being more affordable, day to day living is also more affordable in the long run. You won’t need to spend as much money on maintenance, as you won’t need to cover anything on the exterior of your home. Often times with new-build condos, the owner of the complex also warranties certain interior issues that could arise. If the complex comes with amenities, you will also save money on any potential memberships you would otherwise need to hold.
Condos are great for those who are looking to upgrade from the cramped size of an apartment but don’t need or aren’t quite ready for the size of a standard home. If you’re living alone or you have a small family, the typical square footage and layout of is perfect for you. Most of the time, you’ll still have that extra bedroom for any guests that come to town.
Another pro to a lower square footage is that If you don’t have a ton of furniture, you’ll be able to furnish the condo without spending a lot of money on new items all at once.
Cons of Buying a Condo
Now that we’ve looked at the pros of buying a condo as your new home, let’s take a look at what some of the negatives are:
Lack of Privacy
If noise and privacy are a big concern for you, then buying a condo may not be the best option. Living in a condo is essentially an upgraded version of an apartment, except you own it. You will still have neighbors in close proximity which comes with all of their noise and, unfortunately, their guest’s noise as well. If the condos are all joined together, which often times they are, depending on the wall thickness, noise could be an issue.
Having your own lot as a homeowner separates you from the others in your neighborhood and provides a little more peace and quiet. If that’s what you’re looking for, buying a home would be the best answer.
While living in a condo with great amenities, a maintenance team, security, and more may be great as far as convenience and safety, you will need to pay for them through homeowners association fees. This payment is made on top of the mortgage that you’re already responsible for paying.
The fees can vary and tend to be in the upper $200-300 range depending on the condominium complex that you live in. The good news is that these fees go toward keeping the property safe, properly functioning, and looking beautiful. A lot of standard homes do come with HOA fees as well depending on whether or not they have an HOA in the neighborhood.
Following the Rules
If you live in a condo with management and/or an HOA, you will need to follow the rules they’ve laid out for the community. You may not be able to have that satellite dish for your TV network, or put solar panels on your roof, or have certain things displayed on the exterior of your home. You will need to ask permission those types of things before you do them. If you’re concerned about this and you want to have free reign on what you do with your home, then buying a house may be a better and less stifling option for you.
Delinquency on Fees
If other community members living in your condo complex have stopped paying their fees, everyone else will end up suffering, unfortunately needing to cover the cost. If this is something that just doesn’t jive with you whatsoever and you want to ensure that you remain responsible only for your share of fees, living in a condo may be the wrong move.
Hard to Sell
A majority of people looking to purchase are looking to buy a house instead of a condo. This makes condos slightly difficult to sell in the future. If there are multiple units for sale in your particular complex, selling a house may become even more difficult depending on the exact location and what shape your unit is in. If you’re thinking that you’re not going to keep your condo for an extended period of time, buying a house may be the better decision for you in your search.
One option when a condo becomes difficult to sell is to rent it out. A lot of renters are looking for more space and aren’t able to or don’t want the commitment to purchase a new place. Be selective with your tenants to ensure that your investment is fully protected.
Appreciation is Slow
Single-family homes appreciate more quickly than condos because, in a condo, you don’t own the land. Owning land is a driver of appreciation, and in a condo, the complex owner owns the land while you simply own the actual living space.
If you’re considering a condo because it’s in a particular area that’s expected to advance over the next few years, it would be an even better decision to purchase a house in order to get the maximum appreciation benefit.
If you’re looking for a decent amount of space or you’re planning on growing your family in the short-term, buying a house would be a better decision vs. buying a condo. While square footage in a condo is typically a good size, you will want the extra room for your family. It will also provide more room for guests when they come into town and you won’t need to worry about a cramped space.
So, What’s the Verdict?
Now that we’ve looked at all of the pros and cons of purchasing a condo as your next home, it really comes down to each particular person and unique needs. If you’re someone that lives alone, or with a roommate or significant other, and you’re looking for low maintenance because you work a lot and want to kick your feet up on the couch when you get home, a condo would be a great move for you. If you’re someone that has a slightly larger family, or you’re looking for a more quiet, independent sort of experience, then a house would be the better decision.
For those leaning toward a house purchase, it comes down to whether or not you care about the proximity of people and also the having a management team to listen to. For those leaning toward the condo, you’re probably looking to save money and have access to all of the convenience you can, while you still can.
While making the final decision can be scary and anxiety-ridden, it doesn’t need to be when you have an expert team on your side, leading the way. By letting your realtor know what all of your needs are, they can best steer you in the right direction to ensure that you’re going to making the best decision for your unique situation. You want to be sure you’re protecting your investment and that you’re going to be happy with your new home purchase. The well-seasoned AZ Deal Hunters understands and respects the needs of each individual home buyer.
If you’re considering buying a condo or a home in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Chandler, or Tempe, Arizona, AZ Deal Hunters can help you find the right property that suits your needs. If you need assistance in buying a condo or house in Arizona, call 480-432-7049 them today!