Town Home vs. Row Home & PUD vs. Condo


Row home and Town home properties are often confused with each other and seem like they are the same thing. The different names only indicate the style or design of the property. Both types of properties are attached dwellings, which means they are physically attached to the property next to it. The word town in town homes was changed by builders to describe the new construction properties they where building. They did this so that their dwellings would seem more upscale compared to the original row homes. When all is said and done row homes and town homes are the same thing.

Now lets discuss PUD (planned unit development) and a condo (condominium) and a little explanation of what an HOA (home owners association) is. These have a few similarities, which is why they are so often confused with each other. First, both PUD and condo have HOA’s. If the dwelling has an HOA, it will require a fee, paid by each property owner within the specific plan. This fee covers daily maintenance and operations of common elements of the plan. These often include pools, pool houses, sports courts, parking, park, etc. So not only do PUDs and Condos both have HOAs but they can also have any of these elements making them look very similar. They both have a fee amount due on a regular basis that will cover the maintenance of common areas within the community. Along with the fee there will be a contract that states what you can and cannot do in or outside of your property, these are known as CC&R’s(Covenant, Conditions and Restrictions); This is mostly in place to keep everything uniform and looking nice but can be annoying as well. Some restrictions include where you can park, what color you can paint your house, what you can add to the exterior and interior, etc. Basically along with a fee the HOA has many restrictions that you must follow.

There are many similarities between PUD, your yard and Condos but the real difference has to do with the ownership of the property. In a PUD you own your yard and in a condo your yard is shared space. Your yard you have to maintain yourself and shared space is maintained by the HOA, unless otherwise stated in the contract. Another big difference between the two is that with a PUD, you own the exterior of your property and with a Condo you do not. The same as the yard in a Condo the roof, decks, siding, and possibly windows and doors are included in the HOA fee but not if you are in a PUD dwelling. You should be able to find all of your limitations included in your contract you signed. This is often why condo HOA fees are higher.

So you see it does not have to do with the design of the property or what amenities you may have in the community but with the ownership. A PUD property you have much more ownership than a Condo but that also means you are responsible for maintaining what you own on your own. I hope this is helpful to you if you currently live in a PUD or Condo, or if you are looking to purchase one. Please let me know if I can answer any other questions you may have.


Please contact our office with any questions you may have or to schedule your appraisal appointment at 760-741-7699, or use our contact page on our website.

Brandlin Appraisals Inc. specialize in helping people who need appraisals for estate purposes, divorce, date of death, bankruptcy, FSBO’s and more throughout San Diego county. For more information please contact us at (760)741-7699, or visit our website at, or email us at

Mike Brandlin
San Diego, CA // Real Estate Appraiser
(760) 741-7699

San Diego Real Estate Appraisal Services For:
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