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Looking to buy or rent a new living space? It’s difficult to decide on what type of housing you should look for since people have different opinions on their living quarters. It may be tempting to buy a whole house, but smaller budgets tend to lean towards apartments instead.

According to this landed property contractor in Singapore, homeowners need to be aware of the stark differences between buying a house or an apartment, and choose which option is right for them and their family. Make your decision easier by knowing the differences between houses and apartments:

1.  Budgets and Costs

When you buy an apartment or a condominium unit, you purchase the rights to live in the unit, and decorate the interior the way you want it to be. However, with a house, you purchase not just the home itself, but also the land it sits on.

With apartments, the cost of utilities such as water, electricity, and gas are computed and added to your monthly rent automatically, so you don’t have to worry about making separate payments. With houses, the utilities are all up to you to compute and pay, which may be ideal for homes looking to take control of their spending.

2.  Mortgage and Loans

With an apartment, you are free to move at any point in time when you rent. With a house, however, the mortgage can be costly, and tends to anchor house renters to the house for years. On the flip side, house tenants are less likely to experience unpleasant neighbours, and you can easily gauge the tone of the neighborhood before you purchase or rent a house.

In terms of loans, banks are more likely to provide loans depending on your credit score and budget, so apartments are generally easier to apply for a loan for compared to houses. While most banks offer housing loans, some may have requirements on the size of the space, location, and other variables.

3.  Availability

Some areas don’t have a lot of space to put up large, landed properties that can accommodate the entire population. Take Hong Kong and Singapore for example, land is so scarce that over 90% of their populations live in apartment units and condominiums.

However, a few states in the U.S. actually have landed properties that are preferred over apartments, and can give you better value over rented units. Depending on where you live or where you decide to purchase a home, you may want to consider the availability of the types of housing in the area, and scout for better options and locations.

4.  Space Allocation

A family of 5 may find it difficult to live in a small, cramped apartment, which makes landed properties ideal for large families. Single individuals, young couples, or small families may benefit from maintaining a small space rather than a large house instead.

While there are some apartment complexes that offer large spaces with 3-5 bedroom options, most units can accommodate only a few people at a time. Apartments are relatively easy to clean, upkeep, and maintain compared to their landed property counterparts, but landed properties often come with a large garden that is perfect for kids and pets to play in.

5.  Landed Property

With landed properties, you make two purchases: the house, and the land in which the house sits on. The costs to build a house can increase your budget as well, which is something you will need to consider as you discuss terms with your contractor. Landed properties are beautiful, spacious, but are a lot of work to complete for habitation.

Apartment units, however, don’t come with the land that it sits on as you only purchase the apartment unit itself. However, you often gain access to the communal amenities provided in the complex building, which may include a pool, a garden, and cafes or convenience stores nearby.

6.  Security

Apartment complexes have a single point of entry, and often with a guard on standby, which can increase the security around your home. While you may not get complete and full security, having extra security measures definitely helps prevent break-ins and other crimes around your area.

Houses, however, are standalone properties, and you will need to get your own fence and security system to prevent break ins. Many home security companies have extensive packages that can be used in any home, and can install them in your home. These may come at a heavy price tag, but they are worth it for your peace of mind.