Buyers Guide: House vs. Condo

When you set out to start looking at homes, it’s often helpful to have a list of what you’re looking for in a home: the neighborhood, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, and certain architectural features. As part of this list, some people have a clear preference between a single family home or a condo, and for some the distinction is less important.  If you are on the fence, here are some benefits to buying either a house or a condo in Redwood City.

Single Family Home

Owning a parcel of land with a single family home offers value and options that you won’t get with owning a condo or townhouse. You can add on to a single family home, build an entirely new home, or even add additional income producing units like a cottage or in-law (depending on the zoning in your neighborhood.)

Single family homes typically offer more private outdoor space than multi-residential buildings, which means you can have a garden, let your kids and pets play, or enjoy private amenities like a pool or spa area.

Financially, buying a home is usually more expensive than buying a condo; they are usually at a higher price point. When it comes to taxes, you can write off the interest on your loan, but can’t write off HOA dues.

The pros to buying a single family home are:

  • Owning valuable land
  • Having private outdoor space
  • No HOA dues
  • More tax write off
  • Less deed restrictions

Here are three single family homes that have sold in the past 90 days in Redwood City:



One of the biggest benefits to owning a condo/townhouse in this area is that there is less maintenance than owning a single family home. Many homes in Redwood City are old, and it’s not uncommon to pay top dollar for a home that needs a new roof, termite tenting, or has foundation issues. While some people might revel in tending to their front yards and being handy around the house, many people just don’t have the time or resources it takes to keep up an older home. On the other hand, many of the condos and townhouses in Redwood City are relatively new and much of the maintenance is included in the HOA dues.

While you don’t get the privacy that a single family home offers, many multi-residential buildings offer community amenities like pools, gyms, or walking trails and open spaces.

For the most part your money will go further when buying a condo or townhouse. You might be able to buy a 3bd/2ba condo or townhouse for the same price that you could buy a 2br/1ba single family home. 

The pros to buying a condo/townhouse are:

  • Get more square footage for less money
  • Less maintenance required
  • Lower price points in great neighborhoods
  • Newer construction

Here are three condos/townhomes that have sold in the past 90 days: