Guides/Tips

A Guide To The Types Of Homes You Can Buy

Landed | 25 Jun 2019

Take a look at this resource if you're curious to know more about the different types of homes you can buy and the key pros and cons of each type.


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What are the Different Types of Homes You Can Buy?

Single Family Home

A stand-alone home that is not attached to any others and has some open space on all sides.

  • Key Benefits: You generally have the most privacy and potential for a yard or outdoor space.
  • Perks and Amenities: You have full ownership of a free-standing home.
  • Home Owners Association: Not often.
  • Potential Downsides: The owner is responsible for most, if not all, the upkeep costs of home and yard.
  • Maintenance: You have the freedom to do many home improvements, but older homes can require more repairs. Landed helps you find out this information early on!
  • Landed Support: Landed conducts a full property review of the seller’s disclosures, inspection report, and other documents as applicable to help you know the conditions of different aspects of the home. This helps you negotiate or anticipate potential repairs and maintenance.

New Construction

A home that is built after you sign a contract to buy it.

  • Key Benefits: You get a lot of say in your home design.
  • Perks and Amenities: Everything is brand new and customizable.
  • Home Owners Association: Sometimes.
  • Potential Downsides: It takes time for the home to be built, and there can be delays in construction.
  • Maintenance: Low maintenance for the first few years with everything new and in good condition.
  • Landed Support: Have your Landed partner agent go with you to sign your contract with the builder to avoid them having to pay a Landed referral fee. Landed conducts a review of the home inspection report and any applicable HOA docs once the property is built. Read Landed’s guide to closing on a new construction home to learn more.

Condo (Condominium)

A unit in a group of homes, where the homeowner owns the space between the walls, ceiling, and floors.

  • Key Benefits: Often the most affordable type of home.
  • Perks and Amenities: There can be perks as part of the HOA, like a pool or gym facility.
  • Home Owners Association: Yes. This increases your monthly home expenses and may lower your mortgage pre-approval amount.
  • Potential Downsides: More limitations, ranging from remodeling to the type of pet you can own or if you can rent out your unit. These are all subject to your HOA.
  • Maintenance: Low maintenance for you as the homeowner, as shared structural elements like the roof and load-bearing walls are often covered by the HOA.
  • Landed Support: There’s a lot riding on the HOA review and what’s included. It needs to have a clean record for your financing to be approved. Example: if the HOA is involved in litigation, your financing may not be approved.

Townhome

A property (often multi-floor) that shares one or two sidewalls with another property.

  • Key Benefits: Often feels like a single family home, but is generally more affordable.
  • Perks and Amenities: You may have HOA or joint maintenance agreements to share upkeep costs and pay for neighborhood amenities.
  • Home Owners Association: Sometimes
  • Potential Downsides: More limitations, ranging from remodeling to the type of pet you can own or if you can rent out your unit. These are all subject to your HOA.
  • Maintenance: You have the freedom to do many internal home improvements but may be limited in terms of external changes you can make.
  • Landed Support: Landed conducts a full property review of the seller’s disclosures, inspection report, and HOA docs (if applicable) to help you know the conditions of different aspects of the home. This helps you negotiate or anticipate potential repairs and maintenance.

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About the Author

Landed

Former educators on the Landed team created these materials to help you on your homebuying journey. Landed supports educators on the path to homeownership by providing a personalized team that includes a partner agent and a Landed homebuying expert. We help families navigate all of their options for buying a home, including our own shared equity down payment program. Our team provides free homebuying education and guidance as well as competitive offer reviews for educators. Landed works with K-12, college, and university employees in expensive metro areas like San Francisco, Seattle, Denver, Los Angeles, San Diego, and Hawaiʻi. To learn more visit landed.com.

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