Whether you’re buying your first house or simply moving up the property ladder, the decision to buy a place is a big one, and an even bigger decision is whether to buy a house or an apartment. There are many options when joining the property ladder, from buying to renting or becoming a property guardian.
Although some people will have a strong preference for one over the other, most people are actually quite indifferent and can see the good points of both.
So, if this is something you’re currently trying to decide, then we’ve listed out the benefits of houses and apartments so that you can use the list to see which best fits with your preferences and circumstances at the moment.
Benefits Of Having A House:
More freedom with renovations:
When you have a house, you’ll have a lot more freedom when it comes to the renovations. Of course within reasonable limits, but generally you’ll be able to make much bigger changes to a house than to an apartment in terms of the layout, adding extensions and even any renovations that you do in the garden. For example, if you have a house, you have the option to put a pull in your garden if you have the space and nobody can say anything about it.
You can knock down walls without having to think about people above or below you being affected, and you can add on extensions to make your house bigger, or even convert certain areas, such as a garage, attic or basement as you wish to.
Not only are houses generally larger than the average apartment and offer more space on the inside, but depending on the type of house you have and where it’s located, you’ll oftentimes find more external space, too. This is usually in the form of a garden, but it’s also quite common for people to build a house on their own land, so depending on the size of the plot, then you could find a lot more space surrounding the house than the garden alone.
Perfect for families:
Although not exclusively open to families, houses have typically been thought of as better for a family than an apartment – mainly because of the space on offer and the ability to make changes, so if you have a house that allows this, then your house could basically grow with your family over the years.
Depending on factors like where your house is located and how far apart it is from other houses, you’re generally going to find you’ll a lot more privacy than you would in an apartment where all the properties are right next to each other.
Even if you have a garden and decide you want or need more privacy, because you have more freedom over how to renovate your house and your land if you own any, then you can extend your garden, install things like round hot tubs, swimming pools, or even build a fence if you simply want to be able to enjoy your garden whilst sunbathing, swimming, or gardening without the eyes of your neighbors peering in.
Less noise issues:
If you’re someone who likes a lot of tranquility, then living in house may be a better choice for you. Although a lot of apartments nowadays are pretty well soundproofed, you certainly won’t have to worry about your upstairs neighbor waking you up in the middle of the night with their music.
Also, if you ever want to have a party or just be free to make more noise without disturbing others, then having a house is going to allow you a lot more freedom in this regard than an apartment would.
Benefits Of Having An Apartment:
Easier to maintain:
Typically because apartments are smaller and more compact – especially modern ones that are generally built for a certain lifestyle that requires a more practical layout with storage for everything and a lot of built in appliances, then an apartment will generally be a lot easier to maintain than a bigger house that, not only can take longer to clean, but also may be less practical in its overall layout, and if it’s an older house, then the general upkeep and maintenance can be a lot higher.
Not responsible for building or external renovations:
Unlike when you own an apartment you’re not responsible for carrying out work on the roof, or any other aspect of the external structure that may need repaired.
Although the costs for these repairs will generally be split between the owners of each apartment, you won’t have any responsibility for overseeing the work or hiring contractors, as this will be done by the person or company who owns the building. This is something that appeals to a lot of people considering buying an apartment since it’s more convenient, less stressful, and ensures that work gets done when needed, so you don’t need to wait until you can afford it.
May include amenities:
In large cities, especially, a lot of apartment buildings come with a wide range of amenities. Of course these vary from building to building, but can range from anything to a doorman, 24 hour concierge service, private or underground parking and even luxuries such as gym, valet service, turndown service, swimming pool, cafes and restaurants, cinema, and spa. These amenities will usually be included in the purchase price or be available for a monthly charge, but they can definitely be an attractive perk for those looking to live in an apartment in the city and have everything they use for convenience right where they are.
Ideal for singles and couples:
Whilst there are certainly no rules that say single people or couples can’t live in a house – many do, but apartments are typically more attractive, not only from a lifestyle point of view, but from a cost point of view since apartments are generally going to be a bit more affordable for younger couples and single people who are perhaps looking to get started on the property ladder and later work their way up to buying a house.
May cost less in utilities:
Especially in newer buildings, the heating and insulation is generally a lot better than in many houses, so less heat will escape, as well as all of the heat being able to stay more equal throughout each apartment due to proximity, so they overall tend to generate less heating costs. Things like electric and water can also be cheaper in apartments, and are usually built to the latest standards to ensure top safety, efficiency, and eco-friendliness.
Usually more central:
For the most part, apartments are more often found in central areas of cities and towns, whereas houses tend to be on the outskirts or even in rural areas. This obviously comes with a range of benefits and drawbacks on each side, but if you’re someone who likes the hustle and bustle of the city as well as the convenience and wide range of things to do that seems to be available in most cities, then this could be the better choice for you as you may find yourself getting bored in a house if you’re too far away from the city.
It’s also a better option if you work in the city and don’t want to spend a lot of time commuting to and from work each day.
We hope that this helped you see which of these options is right for you at this stage in your life. As you can see, there’s no right or wrong answer here, it really all comes back to what suits your lifestyle, budget and personality right now.