Should you buy an apartment or should you build yourself an individual house? This is a never-ending dispute among homebuyers everywhere. If you are a first-time homebuyer, in particular, you might have a lot more confusing tasks to handle before you decide to settle down in your first home. There is the concern of how you would get a home loan and whether your credit score is good enough to fetch you good deals for home loans. And even before that, there is the actual choice between an apartment and an individual house. Here are some questions you’d probably consider answering before you come to a conclusion.
- What is my budget?
- Am I looking for a calm and quiet location or are you looking to settle in the heart of the city?
- Do I want to move in very soon or would I prefer waiting for a few more years?
- Safety or privacy- which would be a primary concern?
The fact is that both apartments and individual homes can fulfill all of these conditions in one way or another. But then there are some distinct factors that help make your choice.
Choice of locality
In a metropolitan city like Bangalore, we have seen that the available open spaces are getting depleted by builders and their projects. There are more and more people moving into the city and there is an ever-increasing demand for homes. But the space crunch cannot be forgotten. If you would like to settle in a locality that is in the heart of the city, or perhaps find a house close to your office or children’s schools then finding a plot to build your individual house might be a tedious task. On the other hand, you would be able to find a large number of options in apartments. The expansion of the city borders and the increased urbanization of the outskirts in the recent years has been to tackle this bottleneck. Ideally, unless you already own a plot somewhere in the center of the city or if you stumble upon a builder that offers villa plots in prime locations, you would be left with only one choice if you want to own an individual house- choose a plot in the remote parts of the city. In the second case, where plots are sold in prime locations, the costs are going to be sky-high.
Flexibility vs. Ready Availability
When you build an individual house, you have the absolute freedom to choose the design and appearance unless you own a plot in a community with strict guidelines on the external appearance of the houses. But with apartments, you may or may not be allowed to make any modifications to the main construction. You can, however, choose to splurge on the interior design to give it your personal touch. If you are buying a resale property while choosing an individual house, it would be ready to move in. But when you build a home on a plot it would take a considerable amount of time for the construction to be fully completed. In terms of an apartment, if you choose a reliable builder with RERA registered you have the assurance that you would get your home within the stipulated time. And with an apartment, you simply have to pay the price of the property and the builder would take care of all the construction and timely delivery. You do not have the hassle of finding architects and contractors to help you build as with individual houses.
Privacy vs. Safety
It’s a no-brainer that the privacy that an individual house offers is quite something. That’s not to say that apartments are lacking. Real estate developers today make it a point to create apartments that ensure an individual’s privacy is maintained by others. The common areas would be accessible to all the residents. But there is one factor that draws most home buyers to apartments and that is round-the-clock security. Most apartments today also come with surveillance cameras, 24/ 7 manned security guards and monitored visitor management system. This is to ensure that the absolute safety of the residents is assured at all costs. Let’s not forget the fact that living in a community adds to the safety factor as having more neighbors around can only prove to be beneficial in the event of an emergency.
If you own a villa or build a house in a gated community, then you would be able to access the amenities. But in most cases, this is missing with individual houses. Apartment owners, on the other hand, would be able to access the very best amenities within the premises. This saves a lot of time and efforts, especially in a busy life. Maintenance costs and efforts will also be cut down in the case of apartments since the costs are taken care of by the community/society.
So should you buy an apartment or an individual house?
While each has its own benefits:
- If you are looking for the resale value based on land appreciation then individual homes are better. The building value depreciates here, however. Apartments, on the other hand, would have an appreciation value based on the development of the locality but then there would be no land value attached, except the small portion of undivided share offered with the flat.
- Plot owners get delayed tax benefits but apartment owners can immediately avail them, especially for their first home.
- The homeowners’ association makes it easy to get any type of work done in an apartment. This includes the likes of plumbing, electrical fittings and so on. But with an individual house, you would have to run and get things done yourself. And there is the hassle of getting the grants and permits all by yourself when you build the house. The registration process is also going to take a tad bit longer than when you buy an apartment from a trusted builder who can get it all done quite quickly.
So in the end, while the choice does rest more in favor of an apartment, it is your choice after all. Weigh all your options and pick the best one that would suit you and your family.