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I'm looking to buy an investment property that won’t require much of my time. I've heard that condos require less time to manage than single-family homes. Is that really true?
If you are considering buying a condo with access to a property management company that handles leasing and maintenance issues, then yes, your condo should be easier to manage than a single-family home where you have no one to help manage it but yourself. If your condo unit is “attached,” meaning it’s part of a larger building where several condos are managed, it is more likely there is a property manager who will handle many of the repair and maintenance issues encountered in home ownership – heating/air conditioning failures, roof looks, and exterior painting, to name a few.
Whether your condo is “attached” or “detached,” there are a few things you should reasonably expect to worry less about than when managing a single-family home:
Keep in mind that a condo association that uses a property management company will also likely charge higher condo fees, which may not be worth it if you want a low-maintenance investment. It may also not be a wise financial investment for you either, but that’s another issue. See the article Is That Residential Real Estate Investment Property Worth It? for more on the topic.
Also, there’s more to managing a condo than maintenance and repairs. See the related Q&A on Condo Maintenance for more information.
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