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View Poll Results: Which one would be a better long-term investment financially and security wise?

14. You may not vote on this poll
  • Apartment (max of 3 rooms)

    6 42.86%
  • House( ~6-7 rooms)

    8 57.14%
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Thread: Purchase of House or Apartment

  1. #1

    Default Purchase of House or Apartment

    Fun Hypothetical situation:

    Lets say you've saved enough money over the years to safely purchase a home: A house(or land) or an apartment in an apartment building. You won't be losing any money, you're not spending more than your budget and you're making a safe investment.
    You have a secure and consistent income.
    You currently live alone.
    No mortgage.


    • That they're in two different areas, but are equally distant from the downtown area of your city.
    • Common max apartment space vs common max house space.
    • Uses of space(such as living in it yourself, or renting it to families, individuals, students, or multiple people in one space)

    • The fiscal investment alone
    • The security investment alone
    • Both as a package.

    • Pros and cons? (add on more if you come up with any)
      ---Houses usually can be expanded. The common household has four to five rooms. ~300K min
      - You have to "build your own gym", possibly join a gym(~250$ a month)
      Property tax.
      - Parties, kids, pets, loud noises are okay.

      ---Apartments usually come in a max size of 3 rooms ~250K min
      - Usually have pools/gyms/indoor parking lots
      -Usually against pets, loud noises, parties, and kids.
      -Maintenance fees excluding heat/water(~250 a month)

    Which would you decide on and why? You don't have to go into detail, I'm just curious as to what people are more likely to invest in long term.

    Keep in mind that you are paying for this property out of hard-earned money, and thus, must consider how it will play a role in your life now and later, and what benefits ownership provides.

  2. #2
    Emperor/Dictator Array kyuuei's Avatar
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    Aug 2008


    I voted house, but not at all for the amount of rooms or space.

    I voted it for the (land) thrown in next to it. Now-a-days, it seems like almost useless to invest your money into something you cannot easily change unless you own the land it's on. Houses make you have to follow HOA rules, blah blah blah, unless it's something you own and have some say over they aren't worth it.

    Without the land, I'd definitely choose the apartment. Maintenance is said and done for me, good apartments have plenty of parking and features now-a-days, and apartments give you the ability to change your location. No headaches about property taxes, trash and things like that. If it were a condo, I'd default back onto the land thing for the same reasons as the house, with the added discomfort of closer-by neighbors.
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  3. #3
    RETIRED Array CzeCze's Avatar
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    Sep 2007


    Having been there I would choose the condo if it's a swanky condo in a downtown area and you are the kind of person who wants to live there and have that lifestyle. As a single person or with another young partner a condo is easy to maintain and decorate. It's convenient. It also can have a certain aesthetic that a house generally does not (reason why Crate and Barrel created CB2) basically an "urban aesthetic". It's just easier to buy and live in as a first time homebuyer, again, especially if you are young and single.

    Also, condos are often new constructions, houses are not. So I think 'value' wise condos hold up well against houses. Also because people are generally looking for different things. People looking for houses don't look at condos and vice versa.

    The kind of old house you can get for the same budget as a new condo in a city is generally uninspiring. With a first time home buyers budget you do get more bells and whistles and bang for your buck with a new construction condo.

    If I were looking for privacy and space and "room to grow a family" I would pick a house. But for my first place? No. The negatives are minor inconveniences. Also, depending on the building you will also see lots of kids in a condo building so it just depends on what you are looking for.
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  4. #4
    RETIRED Array CzeCze's Avatar
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    Sep 2007


    PS I wanted to add that when I bought my place I always kept in mind the long term investment value and what would happen if I did not live there or needed to sell on short notice. You need to consider more than just 'condo' versus 'house' including location, parking, and who you are targeting to rent or resell to in the future. Then you need to make your place as appealing as possible to that demographic. I never imagined a family or those with kids would want to live/rent/buy my condo but for the market I intended it does very well. It's also a balancing act. Even if something is technically very secure and 'a great investment' do you really want to live there for 5 years? Where you live dictates your lifestyle.

    I would choose first the kind of dwelling and area that you want to live then ask yourself how easily could you resell/rent and how much profit (if any) could you turn. If you were to turn 0 profit but at least recouped your buying and maintenance costs would it be worth it financially?

    Okay, I wrote more than you asked for. :P I like real estate. I like helping people with their real estate searches.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Array TenebrousReflection's Avatar
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    Sep 2007
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    I have been a homeowner for ~6 years, and from the investment perspective it seemed like a good idea (at the time, my mortgage with taxes and insurance was roughly equal to my previous apartment rent (just a 1 bedroom home with a half basement), and there are a lot of other benefits like being able to do what I want with it for home improvement and all of that, but I have come to regret my decision in recent years.

    The single bigest problem with being a home owner is that it has prevented me from moving when I wanted to because I could not find a buyer (I ended up deciding to rent it out instead, but I'm really not too happy with that compromise). I would not rule out ever buying a home again, but in my own case, I will only do so if I am absolutly certain I am living someplace where I want to spend the rest of my life.

    The bigest advantage of being an apartment renter is the freedom to pickup and move (at least after your initial lease is up) if you need/want to. Not having to shovel snow is another very nice perk of being an apartment renter, but that depends on where you live too - probably not an isue in warmer states. Any other advantages that come with an apartment depend on the specific apartment complex you rent from.

    There are a lot of very good reasons to want to be a home owner, and for most people I would recommend it over renting, but I can't stress enough the importance of location if and when you make that decision - you can improve nearly any aspect of a home, but location you are have until you sell it.

    re-read the OP, if you mean owning an apartment unit or owning a house (ownwership either way), then I would go with the house unless you realy hate yardwork and shoveling snow (if thats even an issue where you live).
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  6. #6
    Nerd King Usurper Array Edgar's Avatar
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    Oct 2008


    Just one dude's opinion here, so take it for what it's worth:

    * Don't buy a house or an apartment for an investment. Buy it to live in. If you buy it for an investment, chances are, you are going to get hosed because you don't know wtf you are doing. Plus, I don't think most people realize what a huge pain in the ass it can be to rent out a place. It's may be hard to find tenants, the tenants may ruin your property to the point where a security deposit won't cover a fraction of the cost, or they may stop paying rent altogether and you will have to spend money on getting them properly evicted while they are living in your place for free (you can't just throw people's shit out on the street, it takes months of legal wranglings).

    * I would choose a house over an apartment. With an apartment you have to put up with HOA bulllshit. People who are drawn to running HOAs are usually control freak-uptight-assholes. So after spending a ridiculous amount of money to buy a place, you will have to listen to somebody's bullshit on what you should and should not do with it . On top of that, you have to pay HOA fees whether you like it or not.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Array Beargryllz's Avatar
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    Jun 2010


    All I know is that that I would probably rent an apartment.

    I don't see myself owning an apartment or house in the near future.

    Neither decision is based on financial gain, but utility.

    Because the financial impact of this question is negligible, I am inclined to base the decision off of utility.

  8. #8
    A window to the soul


    House! My decision is based on financial gain, enough space for my party guests to mingle, an attached 3-car garage, a BBQ grill, and a flower garden.

  9. #9
    Honor Thy Inferior Array Such Irony's Avatar
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    Ever since I've lived on my own, I've always rented an apartment and I'm happy with that decision. I see little need for a house at this point in life. Some advantages to an apartment are not having to do certain maintenance work like mowing the lawn or shoveling snow. If I have an issue with my toilet or air conditioner, I can just have one of the maintenance staff come in and inspect it, usually at no charge to me. Where I live, I do pay for electricity but water and garbage disposal are free. It's also easier to move around freely if you rent an apartment. I don't have to worry about finding someone to buy my house should I decide to move. I don't have a mortgage to deal with. Once my lease is up, I'm free to move whenever. My apartment complex also has a fitness center. I rarely use it as its normally crowded but its nice to have that option.

    I do recognize there are downsides to living in an apartment. There isn't much room for customization. Obviously I can't just add another room on. I'd have to move to a bigger apartment. If I want to paint the walls, I have to get permission. I don't have my own yard space. If you have noisy neighbors, its going to be more of a problem in an apartment than in a house as they are closer to you. Luckily my neighbors are all quiet. If you have more than 2 kids, its going to be difficult to find an apartment large enough to fit your whole family. Even with one or 2 kids, there likely isn't much room for you all. If I had kids, I'd probably go with a house but I'd probably rent a house rather than own one. I'd like to have a yard where my kids could play freely in.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Array captain curmudgeon's Avatar
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    Apartment. I likely could physically care for a decent sized yard/ garden or anything, and I'd be saving money with an apartment, so it just makes sense.

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