Condominiums are not just for Baby Boomers. While condos do offer ease of living because typically someone else does the heavy lifting (yard, sidewalk and exterior maintenance) these benefits are also appealing to people who travel and those with young families.

People who have always rented an apartment or who have owned a home may be new to HOA (Homeowners Association) living and wonder, “Is it for me?” Here are some things to consider.

5 benefits of condo living

  1. It is a private, owned  space, unlike a rented apartment. You can sell or possibly even rent out a condo, giving a condo an investment advantage over a rented apartment.
  2. There are often common areas for your use and enjoyment, such as open spaces, pools, tennis courts, gyms or party rooms.
  3. There is little to no exterior maintenance or lawn care to worry about because those issues are covered in the association fee.
  4. Many associations have extra security such as locked gates and security staff. Condominiums often offer the safety and social network of “community” living.
  5. Condos are often located in a convenient or desirable location such as near shopping, golf or the beach.

5 potential issues of condo living

  1. The association fee can be higher than expected. These fees typically cover all maintenance and exterior repairs and are collected monthly.
  2. The board may make financially irresponsible decisions, causing repairs not to be done in a timely manner or at all. Mismanaged HOA funds are not completely unheard of.
  3. Condos are not always as easy to sell as single family homes. More than one unit for sale in your community can make selling your unit more difficult.
  4. You will need to abide by the HOA rules. Some HOAs have covenants that restrict pets, visitors, and noise levels. Rules may also forbid hanging laundry, certain decorations or improvements to the exterior of the unit.
  5. There can be a lack of privacy. Some people feel safer and more connected with other people around. Others prefer not to interact with or frequently see their neighbors. If you are of the latter group, a condominium community may not be the best choice.

Some people find condominium living liberating and inclusive. Others are better served living in a single family home or renting month to month. Which one are you?