Enjoy a 5.99% 30-Year Fixed Rate on select U.S. homes*! Limited time offer. Explore All Promotions


Should I Buy a Condo or a House?

March 15, 2023
Exterior view of Indigo at New Haven by Brookfield Residential in Ontario Ranch CA

Owning a single-family house vs. condo has many differences, starting with the structure. When you buy a single-family home, you own the house and the land it sits on. When you buy a condominium (or condo for short), the condo is a private residential unit within a large, multi-unit building.

Choosing between a single-family house and a condo comes from personal preference, budget, and lifestyle, so it's essential to carefully consider your needs and priorities before deciding.

If you're wondering which type of home best suits your needs, keep reading to learn the fundamental differences between the two.

The House

Purchasing a single-family home is beneficial, as you own both the structure and the land it’s built on. Compared to condos, they tend to have a higher value. In March 2022, a report by Redfin stated that the median sale price of a single-family home in the U.S. was $406,000, while the median sale price of a condo was $319,000.

The Pros of Buying a House

For some people, owning a house is a better fit for their lifestyle. A larger yard means the kids have more room to play, you can start your dream garden, or you finally have enough space for a dog.

Parking and storage are two more reasons to compare when deciding on a house vs. a condo. Houses often have more space for parking, such as a garage or driveway, while condos may have limited parking options. Single-family homes typically have more storage space, inside and outside, compared to condos. This can be especially important if you have a lot of belongings or need extra storage for hobbies or work materials.

Some single-family homes will have a homeowners association (HOA) fee attached. This fee often covers things like maintaining community buildings, amenities, landscaping, and more.

Other benefits of buying a house include:

  1. Privacy: Owning a house gives you more privacy than living in a condominium. You have your own space, both inside and outside the property.
  2. Space: Houses generally offer more living space than condos, which means there’s plenty of room for everyone, and everyone has plenty of room.
  3. Control: When you own a house, you have control over the property and can make changes to it as you see fit. You can paint, decorate, and renovate the space to suit your needs and preferences.
  4. Limited (or complete lack of) Restrictions: As the sole owner of a single-family home, you can use your space as you desire, such as renting out rooms or the entire house.

The Condo

Condos offer an easy transition into homeownership. If you’ve been renting an apartment, you’ll find a condo has similar features such as shared building space with other residents. Additionally, you can find comparable square footage, but with the added benefit of building equity in your home through ownership. 

Condominiums have gained popularity among homebuyers in recent years. The Zillow Consumer Housing Trends Report 2021 reported that 10% of homebuyers purchased a condo, representing a 4% yearly increase.

The Pros of Buying a Condo

There are several advantages to buying a condo, including affordability. Condos are often more attainable than single-family homes, making homeownership more accessible to a broader range of buyers. As houses appreciate, condos, too, can be a good investment opportunity, as they can appreciate over time and provide a return on investment when sold.

Another advantage is in security. Condos often come with additional security features, such as gated access or on-site security personnel, providing residents with a sense of safety and peace of mind.

Other benefits of buying a condo include:


  1. Low Maintenance: Condos are typically managed by a condominium owner’s association (COA) which is responsible for common areas and often exterior maintenance. This can relieve the homeowner of many maintenance responsibilities, allowing them to enjoy a low-maintenance lifestyle.
  2. Amenities: Many condos come with a range of amenities, such as a swimming pool, fitness center, and common areas, that all residents share.
  3. Location: Condos are often located in more convenient and desirable neighborhoods, close to shopping, dining, and entertainment options, as well as transportation options.
  4. Community: Living in a condo provides a sense of community, as residents share common areas and amenities and often interact with each other regularly.

The Big Picture

Deciding between a single-family home and a condo ultimately comes down to individual needs and circumstances. 

Some key points to remember are:

  • Owning a single-family house means taking on most maintenance and repair tasks both inside and outside the property.
  • A condo is typically managed by a condominium owner’s association (COA), which takes care of exterior maintenance and common areas, while the individual owner is responsible for maintaining the interior of their unit.
  • Single-family homes offer more space and privacy, as they generally have a yard and don't share walls with neighbors. In contrast, condos usually have limited outdoor space and less privacy.
  • Condos often have built-in amenities such as a swimming pool, fitness center, or common area, to which single-family homes need access to community-wide amenity spaces.
  • Compared to single-family homes, condos often have more restrictions, such as rules regarding pet ownership, decorating, and renters.

Finding Your Dream Home

Whether you choose a single-family home or a condo, investing in a new home can be a smart financial move. Both options provide you with ownership of a space and the opportunity to build equity toward other financial goals. Ultimately, choosing between a house or condo depends on your preferred living environment, budget, and willingness to undertake maintenance tasks.

Buying a new home is a big decision, but our team is with you every step of the way! Explore where we build and contact us if you have any questions. We’ll be expecting you!