When you’re preparing to buy a home, it can feel as if there’s an endless number of decisions you have to make. And while this is an incredibly exciting experience, it’s also a lot to take in at once.
After all, this is where you and your family will strengthen relationships and make memories for years, even decades, to come! Making the right decision is crucial.
One of the best places to start in your decision-making process is to choose which type of home is right for you: townhouse vs. single family home. Each option comes with its own set of benefits and drawbacks, it all depends on your specific wants and needs.
If you’re unsure which option would suit you better, we’re here to help! Read on to learn more about townhouse living vs. buying a single family home.
What’s the Difference?
Before we get into who should buy what, let’s quickly go over the difference between a townhouse and a single family home. When most people think of townhomes, they envision tall, narrow homes attached to similar homes in a row along a single street. But that isn’t always the case!
A townhouse can sometimes appear similar to a condo. The difference is that, along with the interior, you own the land beneath the home, the front and backyard (no matter how small), and the exterior of the unit. With a single family home, you own all the same features, but your home is detached from the surrounding homes.
What’s Your Budget?
There’s no question about it, homes are a massive investment. First, you have the initial costs, mortgage and monthly fees, maintenance, and repairs. Add to that the fact that homes are selling for almost 25% more in 2021 than they did in 2020, and you’re likely going to spend a large percentage of your income on your home.
As with any major purchase, your budget is going to be a large factor in your decision. Though townhouses aren’t as inexpensive as purchasing a condo would be, they’re typically far less costly than a detached home.
While you can find single family homes at lower prices, you might not get as much square footage as you would in a townhome. If you can get the square footage you’re looking for at a lower price, you might need to do some repairs or updates after you move in.
Also, keep in mind that the sticker price of the home isn’t the total amount you’ll be paying. All townhomes come with a monthly HOA fee, for example, which can be quite expensive depending on the amenities offered in the community. Some single family homes have HOA fees as well, depending on the neighborhood, but they’re typically lower in price.
That said, while townhomes are more expensive in terms of HOA fees, single family home costs are higher in regard to maintenance and repairs.
What Are Your Priorities?
In other words, what does your lifestyle look like? Though the benefits of a single family home are appealing, a detached house comes with far more responsibilities than a townhouse.
When you own a single family home, you’re responsible for every single repair and maintenance task it might require. Take an honest look at your priorities before making your decision.
If building a home and spending a great deal of time within it is at the top of your list, a single family home could be perfect for you. To learn more about the advantages of a single family home, take a look at https://lizluke.com/blog/5-advantages-living-single-family-home-alexandria-va/.
On the other hand, if you’re an avid traveler and want to spend weeks or months away from your home at a time, a townhouse is the better option. You don’t have to worry about your front yard turning into a jungle while you’re away, it’s maintained for you!
Amenities vs. Autonomy
Besides your budget, this is going to be the largest factor in your decision. Which means more to you, amenities or autonomy?
One of the most appealing benefits of a townhouse is that when you purchase your home, you gain access to any amenities offered in the community. This could be a fitness center, swimming pool, or clubhouse.
Let’s say you’re a fitness enthusiast who never misses a day at the gym. Your gym membership is $100 per month. Your HOA dues are $100 per month as well, but you also get lawn care, seasonal power washing, and pool access with it. You could drop your gym membership and actually save money!
Now, with these amenities comes a loss of autonomy. Though you own the townhouse, you’re still subject to any rules of the community and homeowner’s association. Changes to the exterior of your home, for instance, are often against the rules in a townhome community.
With a single family home, what you miss out on in terms of amenities, you gain in autonomy. It’s your home and you can do whatever you want to the interior and exterior, with no contracts to tell you no.
Choose Between Townhouse vs. Single Family Home With Confidence
You could ask ten different people their opinion about which is better, townhouse vs. single family home, and you would get a different answer every time. Everyone has different budgets, goals, and lifestyles, meaning the best option is different for every person!
When you’re choosing the type of home for you, look at your own lifestyle and goals now, as well as what they might look like in 5-10 years. Align your home with your family’s personality and you can’t go wrong.
If you’re interested in learning more about choosing and designing the perfect home for you and your family, take a look at our blog!