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Differentiating a Condo from a Townhouse

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By : Sonia Smith    99 or more times read
If you have been looking around for a home to buy, most probably you have come across several listings for condominiums or townhouses. At first glance, they might appear the same. However, these homes are two different things.

Let us take a closer look and clarify the terms so you will have a clearer idea of both and be able to decide what kind of home is preferable for you.

A condominium or condo for short is a single unit or component that is normally attached to other individual units within a bigger complex. An owner of a condo unit owns the inside of his or her individual unit. All condo owners own the structure and land outside their single units. While it is more common to find condos as being attached, there are more and more detached homes that are sold as a condominium ownership.

When you buy a condo unit, you will get the title of your unit in the building but not the land that it sits on. Basically, anything found outside your single unit is considered as common space owned by all condominium owners. When you own a condo, you will pay for the property taxes for your unit alone. You will be collected an owner’s association fee monthly. The money collected will be used to maintain the entire complex.

A townhouse is more or less similar to that of a condominium where you purchase a single unit that is within a complex. However, there are main differences and probably the biggest difference is that in the townhouse, you own the unit and at the same time, you own the land that your home sits on. This means that the houses could not be stacked on top of the other. Instead, they are joined by the sidewalls of each building. You will not have an upstairs or downstairs neighbour but you will have a next-door neighbor.

As an owner, you will be paying for the taxes for both your home and the land. Just like condos, all public spaces are considered as common areas for all homeowners. There is also an owners association fees collected very month to help in the maintenance of the place.

The words townhouse, row house or townhomes are often interchanged. These terms illustrate a sequential series of similar units that may or may not share common walls. These homes either have two or more levels and may or may not sit on individual lots. These homes could have a front yard, backyard or none at all.

The confusion usually occurs depending on the terms used and in what way. A townhouse, townhome, row house or single-family home could either be Condominium, Fee Simple or some other term.

Regardless if you choose a townhouse or a condo, they both have their pros and cons. If you plan to buy and invest in real estate, make sure to ask the advice of a financial advisor, real estate agent, an attorney, legal advisor or friends and relatives. They will be able to give you ample information and guide you regarding the advantages and disadvantages of various home ownership strategies and different types of properties before buying.
Condos for sale in Condo Listings for Sale in Scottsdale, affordable homes in Scottsdale Affordable Homes for Sale and homes for rent in Scottsdale Homes for Rent.

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