Do I Want a High-Rise or Low-Rise Condominium?

Robin Hill Last Updated Oct 22, 2019 (0) comment

Do I Want a High-Rise or Low-Rise Condominium?

What is a high-rise condominium?

According to the Department of Energy (10 CFR 434.201), the term “high-rise” means any building over three stories in height. However, in general, most people consider a high-rise to refer to a building that has seven or more stories.

Pros of a High-Rise Condo

Luxury Amenities

High-rises usually offer luxury amenities to its residents. For example, some condominiums may have a swimming pool, 24-hour valet, a dry-cleaning service, or even wine cellars. Unfortunately, with more luxury amenities and services, come higher homeowners association (HOA) or condominium association (CA) dues.

More Security

Most high-rises will have a professional 24-hour doorman or security guard, which means better security and a way to receive deliveries and packages.

Better View

Strategically built high-rise condos come with a beautiful view.  Of course, the higher you are in the building, the more you can see.

Parking Garage

High-rise condominiums are more likely to come with assigned parking in a standard garage. Unfortunately, this may not include parking for your guests.

Cons of a High-Rise Condo

Higher Monthly Fees

Because high-rise buildings typically offer more amenities, the HOA or CA dues are likely more substantial than a low-rise building.

More Storage, Higher Fee

Your monthly fees are usually based on the square footage of your condo.  Space is premium in a high-rise building.  As a result, the more storage you need, the higher your monthly HOA or CA fee.

More Community Rules

High-rise buildings naturally have more tenants, which may result in a set of rules to govern the community.  One common rule is regarding noise level.  For example, most high-rise condos have a “quiet period”.  Residents  must keep the noise to a minimum during specific hours.

Higher Safety Risk

High-rise condos have a higher safety risk in the event of a fire or an earthquake.

What is a low-rise condominium?

Some may consider a low-rise condominium as a building that is anything less than a high-rise condominium. Others may include a mid-rise category as well.

According to the Department of Energy (10 CFR 433.2), the term “low-rise” means any building three stories or less in height

Pros of a Low-Rise Condo

Lower Monthly Fees

With fewer amenities, come lower maintenance fees.  A low-rise condo usually has lower monthly HOA or CA dues.

Intimate Atmosphere

Low-rise condominiums are designed to contain fewer units per floor. With fewer neighbors, a low-rise condominium has a more intimate atmosphere and tight-knit community.

Lower Safety Risk

Low-rise condos have a lower safety risk in the event of a fire or an earthquake because exiting the building requires less time than your high-risk counterparts.

Cons of a Low-Rise Condo

Fewer Amenities

With lower HOA or CA dues, your building is simpler and more focused on your individual unit.  Low-rise condos usually do not have clubhouses, tennis courts, or fitness centers on the grounds.

No Parking Garage

Most low-rise buildings do not have a parking garage. However, some complexes may have a parking lot.

Do I want a high-rise or low-rise condominium?  Weight the pros and cons and decide what is best for you and your situation.

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