Real Estate

Condo or Carriage House? What are the difference and benefits to each?

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Condo or Carriage House?  What are the differences? Which one is best for you and your family?  

As a developer of homes and condominiums across Chittenden County for nearly 30 years, Dousevicz Real Estate has had it's fair share of building and selling some of the areas most recognized projects.  Today we'll explore some of the critical differences (and benefits) of a carriage home vs a condominium.  

A condominium is defined as: 

an apartment house, office building, or other multiple-unit complex,the units of which are individually owned, each owner receiving arecordable deed to the individual unit purchased, including the right to sell, mortgage, etc., that unit and sharing in joint ownership of anycommon grounds, passageways, etc.

A carriage home, on the other hand, really doesn't have a set defintion in Vermont, but instead can be viewed as a single family house which holds ownership of the footprint of the land for which it sits, but shares in the land around the home commonly with the other neighbors in the project.  You may find this type of project referred to as a "PUD", but that is more a term that is used within the municipality for which the neighborhood resides and the term "carriage home" is more of a marketing term adopted in Vermont.  

Now, the biggest difference between carraige homes and condominiums is shared walls.  Condominiums share walls with their neighbors, and carriage homes do not.  Obviously, if you are sensitive to noise or if you like a bit more privacy, a carriage home is the better option for you.  

What often is similar between condominiums and carriage homes that we see selling in Vermont (mostly in such towns as Williston, Essex, and South Burlington) is that the maintenance of the grounds (snow/ plowing) and trash service is covered within your association dues.  What does differ, however, is some carriage homes include exterior maintenance in their association dues (otherwise known as HOA Fees) whereas carriage homes usually do not include exterior mainteanance, although we have seen select areas where exterior maintenance is included in the HOA fees for carriage homes.  

Another difference bewteen carriage homes and conodominiums in Vermont is insurance coverage.  Most condominiums bylaws state that insurance of the conodminium building, along with the interior of the individual condominiums, are covered within the master HOA insurance policy.  Typically, carriage homes do not cover the entire building of the detached carriage house and will only over insurance on the shared, common land, and individual home owners will need to purchase a separate traditional homeowners policy. 

If you have questions about buying a carriage house or condominium, please contact Brad Dousevicz at Dousevicz Real Estate today! Dousevicz@gmail.com

Making Buying a Home a Reality with FHA Loans

Have you thought about buying a home, but think the possibility is just too far out of reach?

Do you think the only way you own your own home is with 20% down? If you have thought this, don't worry, many people have. In fact, there is a general misconception that owning a "piece of the American dream" is simply out of reach for many Americans. Not true! With an FHA loan, you too can qualify for the purchase of a home...now!

What is an FHA Loan?

FHA is the Federal Housing Administration, which is a member of HUD. Essentially, an FHA loan is a federally insured loan, so your local lender can offer you a great deal on a loan. There is minimal risk for the lender.

So what does this mean for me?

Well, first it means that you may qualify for a low down payment- 3.5% of the purchase price in fact! Also, most of your closing costs (attorney fees, mortgage origination fees, etc) can even be rolled into your loan, so you will need even LESS money at closing. This is one of the reasons that makes FHA loans so attractive to most home buyers with little cash on hand.

So What's the Catch?

Really- nothing in particular, however there are two specific things worth mentioning:

  • There are limits on the value of the home you can purchase. In Chittenden County of Vermont, for example the limit for a single family home is $318,750.
  • You will have to qualify for the loan, just like any other "traditional" loan out there. As long as you have had a steady job and a good credit score, you should have a good opportunity of qualifying for an FHA loan.

The fact is, the FHA program is a great program for people looking to purchase, although they may not have the typical 10-20% down payment available. You can qualify for a very low 3.5% down payment, and be in the home of your dreams earning equity instead of paying rent. For more information on the FHA program, visit: https://www.hud.gov/offices/hsg/fhahistory.cfm Contact Brad Dousevicz of Dousevicz Real Estate for more information, or to discuss your options- 802-238-9367

The Value of a Real Estate Broker with Development and Construction Experience in Vermont

In one wordPriceless. Dousevicz Real Estate has developed some of the areas most recognizable developments in the greater Burlington and Chittenden County area. In this time, I have personally worked with buyers and sellers alike, and I have witnessed many transactions where the buyer or buyers agent just did not have the experience in New Construction as they should. Why is this important? Because buying a new home can be a much different experience than buying a pre-existing home.

Questions you need to ask when buying a new home

Although there are some talented and experienced agents out there, most (if any) do not have the required level of experience that is necessary when buying a new home. For example:

  • Do they have the experience to ask what level of finish is included with the home?
  • What is the energy rating, and what is the builder doing to ensure the home is Green Certified?
  • What comes standard with the home, and are upgrades available?
  • Is the builder requiring that construction loans be provided by the purchaser, or will the home be turn-key and paid for upon completion?
  • What if there are delays with construction?
  • What subcontractors does the builder work with?
  • Are there other projects the builder has worked with, and if so, are there testimonials or references that can be checked?

These are just some of the questions that immediately come to mind in the purchase of a new home, and unfortunately they often go un-asked!

Combining development and construction experience

The good news is Dousevicz Real Estate is poised to fill the need when buyers wish to purchase a new home in Burlington, Essex, South Burlington, Shelburne, or the greater Chittenden County area. Because we have actual development and construction experience - we know exactly the questions to ask when working with a builder to construct the home of your dreams. Whether it a luxury home on the lake, or a home in a newly developed subdivision in South Burlington, Dousevicz Real Estate can use their unprecedented experience to guide buyers through the often complicated buying process of new construction.