Buying a Condo vs a Buying a House, What's Right for You?
(Photo : Buying a Condo vs a Buying a House, What's Right for You?)

There's always stress regarding the decisions involved with home buying...and with good reason. Investing in property takes time, money, and effort, and there are numerous elements to consider.

Common factors to contemplate are the location, age, and purpose of a property. One of the most important of these questions is whether to buy a condo or house. This can be true whether you're a first-time homeowner or an experienced one. 

While making decisions on properties can be made easier by enlisting the help of an experienced salesperson, such as one of the top real estate agents in Toronto, let's first discuss some of the differences you need to consider when choosing between a condo and a house.

Houses come in endless amounts of sizes, shapes, and layouts. Having multiple level floors and a basement opens more possibilities when it comes to floorplans. Owning a house also means you control your home's external appearance and the land on the property itself, such as backyard customization or painting it's exterior.

Condos on the other hand are individual units within a building; this means your property will have people in other condos surrounding your condo in all directions. Furthermore, your ownership only pertains to the interior unit itself and ends at your front door. With this in mind, you are at the discretion of your building management for things like lawn maintenance, functioning mechanics such as elevators and garbage chutes, and simply having exterior windows cleaned.

Besides these main differences, there are also other significant considerations when deciding between the two types of properties, including the following:

Pricing and Location

This is a significant factor that affects the price range. Your desired location reigns supreme when it comes to the prices of real estate. A condo in downtown of a major city like San Francisco, Paris, London, and Toronto will cost substantially more than a house in a remote suburb. Meanwhile, if your desired location is a smaller town or suburban area of a city, condos are scarcer, lowering your potential choices in properties and finding exactly what you're looking for.

Rules and Restrictions

As previously mentioned, owning a condo means you are a part of a building, and thus some form of homeowner association or condo board governs your building restrictions. These rules can dictate anything from pet allowances, parking restrictions, home renovations, and approval of using the property for short-term rentals like Airbnb, which many condo buildings actively ban the use of.

These rules can also apply to specific housing neighbourhoods such as those in gated communities but these rules are usually much laxer than condo counterparts.


Condos typically have cheaper insurance fees, as your coverage is only for the structures within the confines of your condo versus the entire building. For example, damages like fire to the lobby or burst pipes outside your condo are paid for by the building, not you.

When it comes to an individual home, you're responsible for the entire property. This can include insurance for things like roofing, foundation, and sheds.