marcwd wrote: ↑Mon Apr 25, 2016 5:22 pm
As was remarked to me once, condo living is like renting an apartment. But now you own the place.
Actually, no. It depends on the percentage of renters in your condo development. The more owner-occupied units you have, the better off you are. Our property management company actually got rid of a problem tenant last year. Also, my condo has doubled in value since I bought it and I could sell at any time in a matter of days and buy a mansion in a LCOL area! For only $425 a month in HOAs, I live in a gated community with beautiful tennis courts, landscaping, a pool, a jacuzzi, a clubhouse, and a locked mailroom. We can use the outdoor areas most of the year as our weather is beautiful here. There is no way I could afford exterior maintenance, a tennis court, a gardener, a pool, and a jacuzzi in a single family home for $425 a month. Also, my energy savings are significant. I only have one exterior wall. I rarely use heat or air conditioning. I am single, and I actually like the noise of human beings and animals above me. I like petting my neighbors' dogs when I walk outside.
The main negative for me: in our regulations, it states that the homeowner will put in an insurance claim for damage in their unit, no matter who caused the damage. I put in a claim for a $32,000 flood on my insurance a few years back, and now if I have another claim in 5 years, I will lose my insurance. So, the next time my upstairs neighbor is negligent and floods my unit, he will be threatened with a lawsuit if he doesn't pay my damages. I later found out that the bottom floor occupants generally get the person who caused the flood to pay for their damages because of this insurance guideline. I do like, however, not having to climb stairs to my condo.
Where I live, the term "condo" means that the living unit is separate from the garage area. A "townhome" usually has a garage where you drive in, park, and then enter directly into your unit.
Either way, a condo is the only place I can afford in coastal southern California.