Condos for Sale

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What is the difference between a condo, a town home, PUD, and a cooperative?

These types of home ownership are different from the typical single family detached home ownership because there are parts of the property that are shared by and paid for by a group of owners.

Condominiums – Condos

  • An individual that owns a condo has title to the unit itself and not the land beneath or the air above.  This makes sense as many condos have a floor above or below the unit.
  • The common areas like side walks, pool areas, fences, landscaping, are paid for by the group.
  • Owners of condominiums pay taxes on the unit itself.
  • There can be a private home owners’ association managed by the home owners or a professional management group.  This HOA collects fees from all owners in order to maintain common areas and pay for common area insurance.
  • In a condo, your insurance is typically “renters” insurance as it will cover your personal belongings.  Insurance covering the actual building is paid through via your home owners’ association dues within a blanket policy. (Disclaimer: Read the HOA documents carefully to understand coverage and liability.)

 

Townhouses or Townhomes

  • Townhouses are typically two floor unit that share side walls but the air above and ground below is owned by the homeowner.  It actually defines a style of architecture and not ownership.
  • There are townhomes styled homes that do not own the land above or air above.  They are called town homes because of style and have ownership like a condo.
  • Townhouse owners pay property taxes on their individual units.
  • There can be a private home owners’ association managed by the home owners or a professional management group.  This HOA collects fees from all owners in order to maintain common areas and pay for common area insurance.
  • In a town home, the owner typically purchases insurance that will cover the interior walls,floors, plumbing, and electric and exterior wall, fences, detached garages, and roofs are covered by the blanket policy paid through the home owner association dues.  (Disclaimer: Read the HOA documents carefully to understand coverage and liability.)

PUD is a Planned Urban Development

  • This type of home can be a single family detached home where there exists common areas (like a pool, clubhouse, sidewalks, park) that are shared by the community and therefore are paid for by the group of owners.
  • There can be a private home owners’ association managed by the home owners or a professional management group.  This HOA collects fees from all owners in order to maintain common areas and pay for common area insurance.

Cooperatives or “Co-op”

  • A cooperative is a piece of real estate owned by a corporation and the individual buyers purchase a portion of the real estate.   The owners in this case are considered share holders and hold a lease for the unit.
  • Taxes and Mortgages are paid for through the corporation and all costs to operate the building are shared by owners (shareholders).
  • New owners or shareholders are approved by a board.
  • This is not a common form of ownership in California.

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