Why I chose to purchase a condo
over a single-family home
If you have been following me for a while, you’ll know that prior to purchasing my home I was living in my DREAM loft! There couldn’t have been a more perfect place for me to live at the time. I mean it was gorgeous - black concrete floors, authentic exposed brick, industrial elements like piping, graffiti and wood columns. The location was a dream! Walking distance to my favorite summer festival (Sweet Auburn Fest), 10-minute drive to amazing restaurants, and a skip to the train. It had its quirks that I learned to love such as the loading dock outside of my window that constantly sounded like thunder and the Marta train passing behind the building, but I loved my neighbors and the community we had. So, you may ask, why the heck did you move!?
Well with trendy in-town living unfortunately comes rent increase. Now this wasn’t some small increase. The neighborhood was “changing” if you know what I mean. So, although a new coffee shop, nail bar, and movie theater is a nice addition to the area…doubling rent wasn’t so nice for its residents. Long story short, I (and many of my neighbors) had to leave my dream loft.
Purchasing real estate was definitely on my to-do list, just not so soon. But let’s be real, I was in a studio apartment that I was outgrowing and although I didn’t need a ton of space, a little more wouldn’t hurt. So I started my First-Time Home Buyer process after finding an amazing realtor and mortgage lender. I made the decision that I wanted to buy a condo and here’s why:
I had no budget! I honestly couldn’t afford more than what I was already paying in rent. Hence the need to move. Thinking of making a home purchase was pretty intimidating, but I figured it wouldn’t hurt to see what was out there. I knew it would be worth it to build equity instead of continuing to rent. My mortgage lender was so amazing. She helped me take a realistic look at my finances and told she what I needed to do in order to have a mortgage I could afford. She approved me for a purchase amount that would make my mortgage the same, if now lower than the amount I paid in rent! That purchase amount was enough for a small condo which is exactly what I needed.
Now this is something that was a non-negotiable for me. I loved the location of my apartment so much and I didn’t want to budge. It was easy for my realtor to find condo properties in the city and neighborhood I wanted rather than finding a single-family home. Although I would lose out on square footage, my favorite summer festival would still be up the street!
There are a few things a condo community can offer that a single-family home can’t, like an HOA to take care of yard maintenance. Cutting grass just isn’t in the stars for me! I desired an HOA that would trim the bushes outside of my door, a concierge to accept my many amazon packages, an assigned parking space in a covered gated garage, security cameras, a huge pool for me to stick my feet in, a gym I won’t use, and someone to buzz me when my Postmates is here. I have all of those things and more!
Now when I say security, I don’t just mean cameras and a guard that walks the property. I mean neighbors that are close enough to hear you scream if an intruder comes through the window! Now I may be a little dramatic, but I needed to still feel as though I wasn’t alone. I needed that sense of security. I haven’t had the pleasure of getting close to many of my neighbors but I hope to form some good relationships soon.
5. Starter home
As you know, I am a first-time home buyer. I definitely feel that a condo was a great first big investment for me. It’s in the heart of a growing city and is steadily increasing in value. I don’t plan on staying forever, but I do plan to play my cards right when it comes to this property.
So, that wraps up the main reasons I chose a condo over a single-family home. If you are currently weighing your pros and cons I hope my little list helps! If you are a home owner or plan to purchase soon I’d love to know what type of property you chose and why!
If you’re just now starting the home buying process, I have a YouTube playlist with details about my entire experience! Be sure to check that out and subscribe!