Ready to reduce your square footage? Look at these possibilities
Wondering why you’re paying for space you don’t use? It might be time to downsize.
Whether it’s because your kids have all finally left the nest or you’re looking to spend less time maintaining your large home and yard, there are plenty of reasons why you might decide to downsize.
Saving time, money and energy are three of the top rationales for moving to something a bit smaller. But figuring out a housing option for your own situation will take some research. To help you start thinking about what might work best for you, here are a few pros and cons about townhouses, condos and patio homes. And, needless to say, for specific options within the Comox Valley, just ask!
Townhouse living – is it for you?
When buying a townhome, you’re paying to own the unit and you also have a percentage ownership of common area. Typically, though, they are two or sometimes three levels and have shared common walls on either side with other units.
Some of the best things about living in a townhouse are that purchase prices are less than what you’d pay for a comparable amount of square footage in a detached home. Additionally, you share the maintenance cost of common areas, such as lawns, gardens, playgrounds and picnic areas with work usually contracted to outside firms specializing in grounds maintenance. No more weeding and pruning! You also can get extra amenities, such as guest suite or meeting rooms.
But for some people, the thought of sharing walls with another unit is a concern. Parking may be assigned somewhere else on the property. And often, there is just a small outdoor space.
Condominiums – a good fit for many
Like an apartment, condos can have other units above, below or to either side of you. You legally own your individual unit, as well as a proportional ownership share of any common areas.
The pros and cons are like those of the townhouse, but because there are also people above and below the noise factor can be greater. Security tends to be greatest in a condo with less accessibility for strangers. And, typically, you have more neighbours or people within your strata corporation.
Patio homes – what exactly are they?
Patio homes are much like townhomes – usually one level, and may or may not share common walls with other units. Constructed much like free-standing homes, patio homes are usually very close together or connected in a limited manner. Parking is generally part of the unit. As with the other two housing options mentioned, ownership comes with a percentage share ownership of the development’s common areas.
Obviously, noise is less and privacy is greater than with condos, as is reflected by their price. Typically, there are more options for adult-oriented patio home developments than there are for condos and townhouses.
One other thing . . .
With all these options, there are strata fees and regulations. Residents are often expected to take part in the strata council as board members, secretaries or accountants. Usually, there won't be any compensation for your contributions, and these associations can become a source of concern if disputes arise, such as over exterior appearances of your home.
Having been a Comox Valley Realtor for 25 years, as well as being a Seniors Real Estate Specialist® (SRES), I am very knowledgeable about what the Comox Valley has for folks looking to downsize. I’d love to be able to help you find a home that works for you.
And before you list your home, have a look at my free Seller Guidebook!