Townhouses vs Condos: Weighing Your Options

Townhouses offer the feel of a traditional home with multiple floors. Condos, on the other hand, are part of a larger building and offer a more compact living space.

Each option has unique advantages and disadvantages in terms of cost, privacy, space, and amenities. This article will dive into the key differences between townhouses and condos.

Whether you’re a first-time buyer or looking to downsize, understanding these differences is crucial in finding the right home for your lifestyle.

Townhouses vs Condos: Weighing Your Options
Alphington Townhouses / Green Sheep Collective

Key Differences Between Townhouses and Condos

Ownership and Structure

Townhouses and condos differ significantly in their structure and ownership. A townhouse is typically a multi-floor home with its own entrance, often sharing one or two walls with adjacent properties.

Condos, in contrast, are units within a larger building. They usually offer less space but provide the convenience of low-maintenance living.

When you own a condo, you own just the interior of your unit, while the building’s exterior and common areas, such as shared swimming pools and fitness centers, are jointly owned by all unit owners.

Amenities and Lifestyle

Condos are known for their rich array of amenities. Many condo buildings feature shared facilities like swimming pools, fitness centers, and community rooms.

Townhouses don’t offer as many shared amenities but provide a different lifestyle benefit. With more living space, including multiple floors and a private yard, townhouses offer the feel of a traditional house.


Maintenance is a significant factor when choosing between townhouses and condos. Townhouse owners are responsible for indoor and outdoor maintenance, including mowing lawns, shoveling snow, and exterior painting. Condos, on the other hand, require the least amount of maintenance of all housing types.

The condo association is responsible for maintaining common areas. In return, you pay a monthly maintenance fee.

Privacy and Space

Townhouses generally offer more privacy than condos because they have fewer shared walls. Many townhouses also come with private outdoor spaces, like small yards or patios, which is a bonus for those who enjoy outdoor activities or have pets.

Condos have shared walls between units and common areas like lounges, pools, and fitness centers. While these amenities are attractive, they also mean that you’ll likely encounter your neighbors more often. The shared nature of these spaces can make condos feel less private compared to townhouses.

So, if privacy is high on your list of priorities, a townhouse might be more suitable for you. If you’re drawn to a more community-oriented lifestyle with easy access to shared amenities, then a condo is the perfect fit.

Financial Considerations

Condos cost less, making them an attractive option for first-time buyers or those with a tighter budget. However, it’s important to note that condos often come with higher monthly Homeowners Association (HOA) fees.

This fee covers maintaining shared spaces and amenities like elevators, pools, and fitness centers. So, while the initial price is lower, the ongoing cost of living in a condo is higher.

On the other hand, townhouses are generally more expensive to purchase but cost less in maintenance.

We recommend researching the prices of condos and townhouses on real estate platforms like Tomo. This can help you gain a clearer understanding of the current market.

Location and Accessibility

Location is another key factor. Condos are often located in urban areas, providing easy access to restaurants, shopping, and public transportation.

Townhouses, while also found in urban areas, are more commonly located in suburban settings. They provide a more peaceful environment, which is great for families seeking a quieter life away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Townhouses vs Condos: Weighing Your Options
Condos – Puro Homes / Mário Alves Arquiteto

Key Takeaways

The market for both townhouses and condos has seen considerable growth over the past year. As more people look for housing options that are more affordable than traditional houses, these two types of homes have become increasingly popular.

While both offer accessible price points, they have distinct differences catering to varied lifestyles and needs.

Here are the key differences between townhouses and condos:

  • Townhouses are independent units with their own entrance, while condos are part of larger buildings with shared common areas.
  • Condos have shared amenities like pools and gyms, whereas townhouses offer private living space.
  • While townhouse owners handle their property’s maintenance, condo living includes a monthly fee for the condo association to manage maintenance.
  • Townhouses generally offer more privacy and space compared to condos.
  • Condos generally cost less upfront but come with higher maintenance fees, while townhouses have a higher initial cost but lower maintenance fees.
  • Condos are usually located in urban areas, while townhouses are more prevalent in suburban settings.
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