What is the difference in a Condo and a Townhome/Townhouse

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Many times, the terms condominium and townhome/townhouse are coupled together in the Multiple Listing Service and other real estate search engines.  Why is that… because they are different, aren’t they?

Santa Cruz County and Monterey County Condominiums and Townhomes


YES! A condominium and a townhome/townhouse are different.

A condominium (condo) is part of a bigger complex. The owner of the condo owns inside the walls, from carpet to ceiling and shares a common wall/floor/ceiling with other condo units. PLUS the “common areas” (i.e. pools, halls, entry, etc.) are jointly owned with other condo owners.

A townhome/townhouse is essentially a home attached to other homes through a shared wall.  The owners owns the unit, including the lot (yard, deck). Typically, there will be a row of townhomes in a development.

With both the condo and the townhome, normally there are a type of Home Owners Associations (HOA). Owners will make a monthly payment to the HOA to maintain the grounds, building, etc. per the agreement.


PROS of buying a condo or townhome vs. renting an apartment

Condos/townhomes are typically less expensive than a single-family residence. Ownership vs. Renting allows for tax deductions, and building equity.

The HOA takes care of maintenance – allowing you to have a life outside of yard work. Usually, the condo/townhome will have certain amenities that most single-family residences do not – like tennis courts, gyms, pools.

Condo/townhome living is not for everyone. But for those who like the idea of “community,” a condo/townhome is something to consider.


Below are statistics regarding condominiums and townhomes in Santa Cruz County, Monterey County and surrounding areas.



If you are interested in buying or selling a condo/townhome, call me today.

Aptos Condo/Townhomes

Santa Cruz Condo/Townhomes

Rio Del Mar Condo/Townhomes

La Selva Beach Condo/Townhomes

Pajaro Condo/Townhomes

Watsonville Condo/Townhomes


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Misstie Pollard
Realtor and Title Settlement Agent - McLean, VA
Answering Northern VA Real Estate Questions.


Nice to point out the difference between condos and townhomes.  There's a difference and it's a little annoying to not have the difference separated in MLS's. Great explanation using vertical and horizontal ownership.

Nov 12, 2013 07:02 AM #1
Terri Woods
Benton, Linn and Douglas Counties - Days Creek, OR
Selling Homes and Land in Oregon

Hi Misstie - Thanks so much. I saw a diagram online, but I don't think it was conveyed correctly so I did my own. I appreciate the comment.

Nov 12, 2013 07:31 AM #2
Robert Fowler - 55CommunityGuide.com
President of Retirement Media Inc. - Braselton, GA
55+, Active Adult and Retirement Communities

Terri very good definitions.  But I wish there was not two terms for townhouse / townhome.  I guess townhouse would be the more popular term, don't you think.  It would be nice to know for advertising and SEO.

Nov 12, 2013 09:14 AM #3
Terri Woods
Benton, Linn and Douglas Counties - Days Creek, OR
Selling Homes and Land in Oregon

Hi Robert - I personally think that there is no real difference, but I hear both terms used, and that is why I included both. I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Nov 15, 2013 02:15 AM #4
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Terri Woods

Selling Homes and Land in Oregon
Contact Terri Woods today!