Taking the property plunge requires tough decision. For a lot people, the first question to ask might be, “Which one should I choose – a single-family home or a townhome/condo?

Each has its own advantages and different living experiences. Single family homes include the land, townhomes can include the land or sometimes will not, while condo owners only own the space inside the unit plus the common area of the building. There are legal differences that any home buyer should understand when making a purchase.

Lifestyle and cost are two main factors that can help you come up with a decision as to which one is more suitable for you; however, there are still basic differences between the two property types which should not be overlooked.

Here are the basic differences of a traditional house and a modern condominium to help you choose which one to go for.

What is a condominium?

Popular in places with high property values, a condominium is a building or a complex of buildings that contains a group of individually owned homes. When you purchase a condo, some of its parts are privately owned, specifically your residence. However, common areas are typically collectively owned by all residents in the condo through a Homeowners Association (HOA). The HOA collects dues from all owners to help maintain the property exteriors and will normally include insurance, water/sewer, common areas and maintenance.

Why choose a condo?

The number of buyers choosing condos in the recent years is increasing because of the resurgence in urban living – as condos are usually located in urban areas close to activities such as shops, restaurants, cinemas, and other places of interest. Many condos offer similar amenities that you can find in resorts such as pools and gyms on site.

For people who have a hectic life, buying a condo is an appealing choice, considering the convenience and low-maintenance lifestyle it brings. With the help of association fees, the exterior and other costly components of the structure are covered. Hence, the maintenance is limited to your home.

The Denver real estate market has many beautiful buildings and communities available to buyers. Including great first homes and many luxury units in great locations.

Maybe a single family home is better for you?

If the idea of shared spaces and walls, or people living above or below you does not sound appealing a single family home is probably the best choice for you. The Denver real estate market has a wide selection of communities each with unique features. Finding that perfect home for you can depend greatly on your lifestyle preferences. Be sure you explore the surrounding cities, consider your priorities in daily life, commute times, activities and long-term stability of each community and neighborhood.

Why choose a single-family home?

Purchasing a single-family home mean you own the land and are responsible for the home completely. Many newer Denver neighborhoods have HOAs also, but unlike condos they do not maintain your exterior, they manage common areas in the neighborhood and ensure that homes are maintained. They have rules (covenants) you must follow so consider those rules and restrictions when purchasing. If you do not want an HOA to have any say in your home make sure you search for a non-HOA community.

How about a townhome?

Townhomes will normally include ownership of the land and only share walls with neighbors. Some will have HOAs as a part of a larger community.  Townhomes are usually larger than condos and often times have attached garages and yard areas so they can be a nice middle ground between a condo and single family home. There are many townhomes and duplexes in Denver area neighborhoods.

Deciding whether to buy a condo, townhome, or a single-family luxury home in Denver may be a bit nerve-racking since both have their own features and benefits. But remember that at the end of the day, only you can decide which best suits your lifestyle needs.