You have many options when you’re looking to buy a new home in the Montreal, Quebec, area. As a first-time homebuyer, you can consider purchasing an apartment, townhome, or condo for your starter home. This handy guide can help you decide which housing style to buy based on your budget, needs, and lifestyle.
Townhomes, Apartments, or Condo? What’s the Difference?
If you’ve been renting an apartment, are ready to move to a bigger space, or want to buy a home, you could consider purchasing either a condo or a townhome. Although apartments, condos, and townhomes have many similarities, they have quite a few differences.
Young families or couples wanting to start a family often look to purchase a townhome. A townhome is a cross between a single-family home and a condo. A multistory townhome shares walls with its neighbors but not ceilings or floors. The main difference between a condo and a townhome is the ownership details because, with a townhome, you own the individual unit and the land under it.
Most townhome communities have HOA fees and share amenities such as a fitness club, pool, and parks within the community. When searching townhomes for sale in the Montreal area, be sure to find a real estate agent who can guide you through the loan process. They can help you understand everything that is covered in the HOA fees.
Apartment buildings have numerous units, share walls, and often have someone living above or below the individual unit. An apartment building is owned by a person or entity, and the owners rent or lease the unit. You would not have to pay homeowners association (HOA) fees; however, you must pay your rent on time. It’s up to you and the apartment owner as to who will pay for any maintenance costs.
Owning a condo is perfect for first-time buyers. A condominium, or condo, is similar to apartments, with several units within the building sharing walls, ceilings, and floors. The HOA fee covers external maintenance costs and the upkeep of the common areas. You’ll want to understand the Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions (CC&Rs) of the HOA fee to know whether you can have pets, rent the condo as a vacation rental, and parking rules. When you buy a condo, you own the unit and a portion of the amenities, like the pool, gym, playground, or parks — but you don’t own the land.
Considering your budget and needs, deciding where to live can be an easy decision. If you’re looking to buy your first home and don’t want the responsibility of a lot of upkeep, a condo is a good choice. A townhome would be ideal if you want to own the building and the land and want a bigger place to live. Consulting with a real estate agent who understands the differences between these living structures, including the CC&Rs and the HOA fees, can help you find the perfect condo or townhome for your lifestyle.