- Real Estate
The Pros and Cons of Condo Living
Is Condo Living For You?
The condominium way of life has its own pros and cons. In a condo project, your neighbor is as close as the other side of your wall. Moreover, keeping the project running smoothly demands the cooperation of all the residents. You should take full consideration of your lifestyle. Do you favor to be left alone or to mingle with other people? Do you mind abiding by the house rules?
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development made a study that noted: "Among the most widespread problems in multi-family ownership structures are the problems of communal living. Both traditional renters, who have had the landlord as an arbitrator of disablements, and traditional single-family home owners, who are usually unprepared for high-density living, have important adjustments to make in a multi-family ownership situation."
In a multi-family development, your condo might be your castle, but you are not always king of your own house. Condominiums are run by rules set by the majority of owners through the community owners' association of elected board members. That implies if you wish to paint your outside door blue and the association says it should be white, you have to paint the door white. More often than not, there are restrictions against certain types of remodeling, and sometimes even children and pets.
Condominium living occasionally means bowing to the will of the majority as specified by the elected board of directors who run the project. This is according to one Chicago property management official. For instance, it can be trouble if the board chooses to raise your assessment fee for new tennis courts and you do not play tennis. These differences can lead to "internal strife," as the HUD study named it. Whether pets must be allowed can usually cause a major conflict. It is, the HUD study alleged, "mostly a conflict between the dog lovers and the dog haters of the world." Sometimes the fighting isn't over just dogs and cats. It has been noted that many owners of condos and single-family homes appear to appreciate the fact that when there is a homeowners' association, they are saved from their neighbors' poor choices of color, design, and materials in doing improvements to their property.