Condo Fees vs House Expenses (Video)
Written by Tangerine

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014


Condo maintenance fees - they can be seen as a big drag on a condo owner’s finances. But let’s not forget that when you own a house, you still have to pay maintenance costs. Those would include costs like repairing your roof, repaving your driveway, replacing your furnace, and even costs to do gardening. The thing is, for a house, you probably don’t know exactly how much you’ll end up needing to spend every month on these costs, since a lot of expenses can catch you off guard. And maintenance on a house, especially if it’s on the old side, can easily be more expensive than condo fees in the long run.

Some people say that you should budget your house maintenance costs as a percentage of your house’s value. So if your house is worth $300,000, for example, you might set your budget for maintenance at 2% of the value, or $6,000 per year. But if you have an older house, you might need a higher budget than that. An inspection from a qualified home inspector can give you a heads-up on what you’ll be looking at in maintenance and repairs down the road.

With condominiums, the amount of maintenance needed depends a lot on what the building offers. Some condos have awesome features, like pool rooms, bowling alleys, movie theatres, and more. These probably come with a higher maintenance price tag than simpler buildings. With new condos, sometimes the fees rise after the first few years. Depending on how a building has been managed, it may need a lot of repairs, especially if no one’s kept up with normal wear-and-tear.

So there you have it. You really can’t avoid maintenance costs, no matter what you’re buying - a house or a condo. It’s all part of being an owner. But the more you can learn about what you’re thinking of buying, the better you can prepare, and the easier it will be to dish out the cash when you need to.

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