When it comes to purchasing your very first home, you may be confused by all the options in the market. There are so many things to consider, like your lifestyle, location, costs, and restrictions. Now, if you have been looking at condos vs mobile homes but aren’t sure which way to go, we’re here to help. There are pros and cons to each option. By the end of this article, you’ll be able to make an informed decision.
So, condo vs mobile home, which is better? Let’s find out.
Mobile homes are built in factories and placed on trailer chassis that make it possible for them to move. Most mobile homes are set in mobile home parks or on leased land. This usually means the owner needs to pay park or lease fees. If you put the mobile home on leased land, it will be considered personal property.
If the mobile home is on land that you own, that’s a different story. You can buy a mobile home and place it on your land and avoid paying rent. However, this means the mobile home becomes real property which will require you to pay property taxes.
Advantages of mobile homes over condos
The most significant benefit you’ll get from a mobile home is the fact that it will be much cheaper than a condo. If you are on a budget, then a mobile home is a great option to consider. Mobile homes cost less per square foot, which means you’ll probably get more value out of the space itself.
The next advantage of mobile homes is the fact that they are a lot more flexible than condos. Mobile homes are only semi-permanent, which means that if you lease land now, but buy property later, you can move your home there. This is advantageous should you decide to move from where you live but don’t want to sell and buy a new home. If you don’t want to commit to one location, then consider purchasing a mobile home.
The cons of mobile homes
A disadvantage of buying a mobile home is that it will depreciate very quickly. If you decide to sell it after some time, you are likely to get less than the purchased value. Because they are considered personal property (like automobiles), mobile homes usually don’t appreciate with time. If you own the land it sits on, you may be able to sell the mobile home at a higher value, but only because the land appreciated and not the home.
Disadvantage #2: if you don’t own land, you’ll have to deal with a landlord. And if you’re in a mobile home park, then despite owning the home, you’ll still have to comply to park rules. If at any point the landlord evicts you, you’ll have to deal with selling the house or moving it, both of which are very difficult.
In addition to landlords and property depreciation, mobile homes are harder and more expensive to finance, because they are personal property. Chattel loans have shorter terms and higher interest rates compared to mortgage loans.
When making these investments, it’s important to keep in mind that mobile homes don’t have permanent foundations. While this makes them mobile, it also means that they are at risk for getting damaged in severe storms or natural disasters.
Buying a condo for the amenities might make it an appealing choice. However, keep in mind that all housing options come with their pros and cons.
Advantages of condos vs mobile homes
The most significant advantage you’ll get from a condo is security. Condos usually employ doormen, have gated entries and some even hire security professionals to keep the community safe. In addition to that, you’ll be living in very close proximity to other homeowners. So you’ll be around people who can help you in case of an emergency.
Another advantage is the amenities you get in a condo. Chances are, you’ll get a swimming pool, fitness center, and a clubhouse. Condos come with a varieyt of facilities that may or may be available in your mobile home park.
Lastly, you’ll find most condos in or near a city with public transport, shopping centers, schools and the like. In comparison, mobile home parks are usually located further from town.
The cons of buying a condo
Despite the frills, there are cons to purchasing a condo. First, you’ll have to pay the Homeowners Association Fees to take care of all those amenities you’ll be enjoying. You can be sure that these association fees are not cheap. If that’s not enough, you’ll probably have less privacy because the only thing between you and the neighbor is a wall. Depending on the age of the condominium community, noise can be an issue. So if peace and quiet are what you are looking for, a mobile home might be a better option.
Condos can be very hard to sell because they are all built the same. There will be nothing unique about your condo. If there are empty units available, buyers will likely choose those over yours. You’ll also have restrictions when making adjustments to your condominium. You’ll be required to live by the rules of the condominium community, which may have strict zoning laws. Although mobile homes in parks have rules are well, additions or any other remodeling to a condo can be much harder.
Condo vs mobile home: what will you decide?
Now that you have the rundown of condos vs. mobile homes, we hope it will be easier for you to make the right decision. A condo may have more amenities to offer, but a mobile home will give you more freedom and affordability.