Part of the "American Dream" is home ownership.
Yet, depending on your lifestyle, owning and more importantly maintaining
a home may not be a perfect fit for you. If you choose home ownership,
understand that the overall process involves a great deal of careful planning
and analysis. Besides locating the "home of your dreams," you
will also have to determine:
- your price range
- what type of mortgage to choose
- what type of homeowner's insurance coverage is adequate
- what type of property structure is right for you
The following are the different types of
home structures available to own:
A condominium can be an apartment, townhouse, or duplex.
Unlike renting, you have ownership in the property. However, when owning
a condo you usually own only the inside walls of the dwelling. Outside
dwellings of condos are owned by the association, which takes responsibility
for the upkeep. Condo owners typically pay a homeowner's fee which covers
facility cost such as grass cutting. As an owner, you receive a title
and joint ownership in any common areas and facilities, such as swimming
pools and tennis courts. The association also develops certain by-laws
or rules of conduct that every owner must follow.
Condos usually cost less than houses, because they typically
offer less space. Additionally, many people are attracted to condos because
they do not want the responsibilities of maintaining and up keeping the
outside of the property. Yet, it is important to remember that association
terms and conditions will limit your freedom to decorate and landscape
In this form of housing, tenants own a share of the corporation
which owns the building. Residents lease their units from the corporation
and are also charged a monthly fee proportional to the amount of ownership
they have in the property. These charges generally cover the cost of service,
maintenance, taxes, and the mortgage on the entire building. However,
the charges are subject to change depending on the decisions and actions
of the board of directors, which determines the corporation's policies.
Importantly, cooperative apartments are non profit corporation and owners
receive the tax benefits resulting from ownership when preparing income
Ownership- Single Family House
Owning your own single family house makes you the king
or queen of the castle. Excluding single family home owners who live in
neighborhoods with homeowners' association, owners are free to decorate
the inside and outside of their home as they see fit. However, with the
freedom comes sole responsibility of the total upkeep of the property.