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Home Buying 101: Townhouse

townhome in minneapolisMost people think of townhouses when you see a building that has several units grouped together, but each having its own entrance. This is typically a “row house” building, or a building with 4 units, each one in a corner. But the main difference between a townhouse and a condo is how the ownership is defined. With a townhouse, you own the structure and the land it sits on. This difference is a technical one, but most people just think of it as a stylistic difference.

Pros:

  • Lower association dues than condos (usually)
  • Lawn and snow maintenance is done by the association
  • Exterior of building is maintained by association

Cons:

  • Exterior of building is maintained by association
  • Association dues

The main difference between a condo and a townhouse is that with a condo, you own the area within the walls, where in a townhouse, you own the land as well. This usually means a condo building is more like an apartment building, with one entrance for the entire building, where a townhouse usually has an entrance per unit.

The townhouse property has some significant advantages over single family properties. The first advantage is that your neighbor cannot paint their house purple and yellow.  The association maintains the overall structure, and also dictates the look of the properties.

The second major advantage is that you have an association performing some of the maintenance for you. This usually covers mowing the lawn, watering the lawn, shoveling the snow, and any other exterior maintenance. The interior maintenance is still your responsibility. This would include maintaining the interior surfaces, the furnace, the water heater, and any other appliances in the unit.

Additional Resources:

Association Living Buyers Guide

Steven Hong - RE/MAX Results 
REALTOR, e-PRO, GREEN, Old Home Certified 
7700 France Ave S #230, Edina, MN, 55435 
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952-915-2252 (office)
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