Houses, Condos, and Co-Ops, Oh My! - Which Type Is Right For You?

House Condo or Coop?

There are a ridiculous amount of options out there for you as a prospective homebuyer. What kinds of properties will suit your needs? What really is the difference between a co-op and a condo?

There are many pros and cons to the top 3 different kinds of properties: condos, houses, and co-ops. Here's a great breakdown from The Nest which will help you decide which property type is right for you.

Condo

When you own a condo, you are owning an individual apartment (as opposed to renting one, of course).

A perk of owning a condo is that, typically, items like cleaning and landscaping are taken care of by the Home Owners Association (HOA for short) or Condo Association. However, you do pay for this in the form of a monthly HOA payment (often called "assessment") which all condo units must pay in your building.

Speaking of all units in your building, this property type is suited for those who don't mind, or embrace, living in close proximity to their neighbors.

Property taxes are paid individually here, and when it comes to sell your unit, board approval is rarely required.

Co-Op

In a Co-Op, you own a share in a cooperative, not your individual apartment - like owning a share of stock in a corporation. Technically the co-op assigns you your unit, but of course for practical purposes you're buying a specific unit. It is best viewed as an association of people who cooperatively manage their social, economic, and cultural environment to varying degrees.

The maintenance for a co-op is the same as a condo via a monthly maintenance fee. These fees are typically higher than a condo, however, as property taxes are included in your tab. 

Buying and selling is the biggest hold up with these types of properties, as any buyer must be approved by the co-op board, and the process can be onerous at times.

Single Family Home

Owners of a single family home own both the home and the land it resides on. In fact, they own a whole bundle of rights, the right of possession, exclusion, control and enjoyment, and more broadly, commonly including air rights, mineral rights, riparian rights, etc. 

All of the maintenance for this property is on you, including snow removal, gardening, structural work, and more. This is probably the biggest drawback to owning a single family home.

Property taxes are paid individually, and buying and selling isn't restricted by any sort of collective organization (excepting municipal and governmental restrictions.)

Questions? Need help? We'd love to hear from you! Don't hesitate to send us an email or give us a call.

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