Is Condo Living Right For You?

If you are living in The Chattanooga Area and considering buying a condo, there are several reasons why this may be a smart move for you. Condo Living is a hot trend in Downtown Chattanooga and the demand for condos is on the rise. The Lawrence Team has several condo listings that you should be sure and check out. Not only is a condo a highly sought after living option, but an investment as well. While there are many benefits to condo living, there are just as many drawbacks as well.

Benefits of Condo Living

1. Saying Goodbye to Maintenance

Most would say that the biggest benefit of living in a condo is most of your maintenance needs being taken care of. If you have health issues, travel frequently, or just simply don't want to deal with it - this will be a huge pro for you. Say goodbye to cutting the grass, cleaning the pool, or paying for a handy-man. Typically, there are several maintenance men on site that will tend to your needs in a timely manner. There will be a maintenance fee you will pay when taking ownership of the condo or leasing. 

2. You will be saving money

Although the cost of a condo vs. an apartment depends on several factors, you will most likely spend less on condo living. If you are a first time home buyer and house hunting on a budget, a condo may be your best option. According to The National Association of REALTOR, the average price for a single-family home is $260,000, while a condo has an average price of $248,200. 

3. Proximity to City

Condos are typically located near or in the heart of a lively downtown area. Chattanooga offers an amazing combination of live music, festivals, restaurants for every palate, art scenes, and much more. Condo living would give you the advantage of easy access to all of these things. Some prefer the option of walking or riding a bike to work to get exercise, and living in a condo would allow you to do so. 

Disadvantages of Condo Living

1. HOA fees

Although 24/7 maintenance service is a huge benefit of condo living, the services cost money. The fitness center, pool, valet trash system, etc. are all included under The HOA fee. Essentially, whenever you purchase a condo, you become a business partner with the association. Most condos require you to pay the fee monthly on top of your mortgage. The fee amount varies on a number of things, such as the size, location, and condition of the condominium. Not only do you have to pay these fees monthly the entire time you are living in the condo, but you can count on these fees rising consistently as the years pass.  

2. Lack of Privacy

Another disadvantage of living in a condo is the lack of privacy. Most would compare condos to apartments, depending on the condo's structure. You will most likely have neighbors above or below you and on both sides of you. It is almost a given that you will have no choice but to listen to something you do not exactly want to at some point in time. Whether it's a baby crying at 2 am, newly weds having their first real argument, or someone celebrating a little to loudly - there is no escaping it. 

3. Living by Management's Rules

Condo living means that there are most likely rules that have to be followed at all times. The sole purpose of a condo association is to make sure all of the unit owners are following the rules and paying their fair share of the required living expenses. For example, some condo associations will not allow certain breeds of pets, and they will make no exceptions. Management will often set hours that are restricted on noise, known as "quiet hours". You may even be limited to a certain amount of guests at one time, which can be a huge issue in certain instances. Some find it unappealing that you are required to abide by rules, and others appreciate it.