If both homes are DETACHED and don’t share walls with another home, why is one called a Condominium and the other is called Single Family Residence?


SFR vs. Condo


SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENCE (SFR)- Single family residence means a structure maintained and used as a single dwelling unit. Even though a dwelling unit shares one or more walls with another dwelling unit, it is a single family residence if it has direct access to a street or thoroughfare and does not share heating facilities, hot water equipment, nor any other essential facility or service with any other dwelling unit.  So a SFR can be either attached (A) or detached (D).

CONDOMINIUM (Condo)- A condominium is a title to a unit of real property which is ownership in the airspace which an apartment, office or store occupies. The owner of the condominium also owns a common tenancy with owners of other units in the common area, which includes all the driveways, parking, elevators, outside hallways, recreation and landscaped areas, which are managed by a homeowners' or tenant's association.  So a Condo can also be either attached (A) or detached (D).

The main function of most associations is the repair and maintenance of common areas and building exteriors.  The maintenance responsibility for an association is established in the declaration or bylaws. If the condominium unit is destroyed by fire or other disaster, the owner has the right to rebuild in his/her airspace.  Related to the duty to maintain the property is the duty to adopt budgets and collect assessments from the home owners.  In a way, an association is merely a conduit for the homeowners to pay for the various expenses of operating the property. Most states have adopted statutes to cover special issues involving development, construction, management and taxation of condominium projects.

TOWNHOUSE- A townhouse is an attached dwelling that is not a condominium, however condominiums are also described as townhouses. A townhouse doesn't necessarily share ownership of common areas in the same way as condominium owners. This form of ownership provides the owner with a "fee simple" ownership of real property. The owner is responsible for payment of all real estate taxes, maintenance and repairs of the property. The sale of the property may be conveyed to any party without prior approval by anyone other than the homeowner. It may also be defined as a building devoted to the public uses of a town.

Unlike condominium ownership, a townhouse owner owns the physical structure rather than just the airspace between the walls, floor and ceiling. However, in many areas "townhouse" now refers to the physical style of the structure rather than the form of ownership.  

Bonus Information:

CC&R's-  What are CC&R’s?

CC&R’s, known as Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions, are legal limits of usage that can be placed on a piece of property being sold. In terms of a homeowner’s association, they dictate how the association operates and what rules the owners, tenants, and guests must obey. Unless these rules conflict with federal, state, or local laws, they are legally enforceable. 


— Salee Zawerbek, Your Personal Real Estate Consultant For LIFE!



0 Responses to “If both homes are DETACHED and don’t share walls with another home, why is one called a Condominium and the other is called Single Family Residence?”

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