Should I Buy a Home or Condominium in Mammoth Lakes?
The decision to purchase a home or condominium is a commonly asked questions of buyers in Mammoth Lakes and one that should not be taken lightly. Below some Pros and Cons to each:
Condos are obviously lower maintenance from a personal standpoint and generally require the owner to do very little, however the costs of maintenance comes with monthly homeowner association dues. Condos are attractive if you don’t like to do maintenance, particularly if you don’t live in Mammoth full time.
Single Family homes also require maintenance and while you may not have monthly HOA dues, there is still a need to perform similar maintenance items like painting, snow removal, roof repairs etc.
A Home may be better suited for the person that likes to work on the home themselves and save a few bucks. Keep the challenging labor force in mind as well as local labor costs.
If you don’t live in Mammoth full time, you may want to consider hiring a second home owner service to check on things such as freezing pipes, ice dams, roof leaks and just general upkeep of the property. Some suggestions may be Mammoth Prestige Properties, Blizzard Property Management or R&R Home Services
Many buyers in Mammoth Lakes are second homeowners and as such they often like to have the ability to rent their property out on a nightly basis. This affords them the ability to use the property when they want and then rent the property out when they aren’t using it. This helps offset expenses.
Generally, condominiums can be rented on a nightly basis where single family homes generally can not; there are exceptions to each.
Noise and Privacy
Condominiums are generally quite a bit noisier as they are subject to nightly renters and vacationers that may not be as aware of the noise impacts.
Homes are further apart and because they don’t share common walls, they are quieter and more private.
Condos are typically much more affordable to purchase but again have the perception of being more expensive after the purchase due to HOA dues. That said, the expenses may actually be cheaper for a condo due to economies of scale and because so many owners are paying to maintain a given item such as a pool, spa, landscaping etc. As of May 1, 2020 the median condominium price was $450,000
Homes tend to be be priced higher than condominiums, mainly due to their larger sizes and land ownership. Long term ownership costs also tend to be higher. As of May 1, 2020 the median cost of a home in Mammoth Lakes was $789,000
Rules and Regulations
Condos are generally riddled with rules and regulations and are very limiting on an owners “Bundle of Rights”. These may include things such as:
- No coal BBQ’s on your balcony
- No using the spa after 10:00 pm
- Owners must cover firewood with a brown tarp
- Parking in assigned locations, or being limited to 1 parking space
Homes rules and regulations are limited to that of the government or neighborhood CCR’s. These tend to be less stringent.
Condominium owners don’t typically have to worry about removing snow from balconies or driveways where owners of single family homes typically do. If you own a home you will most likely be purchasing a snow blower and a few shovels.
Also a south facing home will benefit from passive solar and the melting of pestering ice during the winter months.
There may be a variety of service providers needed when you own your own home or condo, so we have provided a list of some that we recommend in the link above.