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Thread: kids and townhouses

  1. #1

    Default kids and townhouses

    Anyone have any experience with living in a townhouse with children?

    We are downsizing our house due to the cost of everything but the mortgage (that is low)...but the heat and maintenance inside and out (with a million trees and plants vs. just grass) is just too much.

    In our area, we can either get a tiny, cramped twin, a really old single, or a nice townhouse. We lived in a townhouse prior to kids. We moved because the fees kept going up to the point where they were as much as our mortgage, and i swore I'd never live in a townhouse again. I saw one this weekend, and it had everything I wanted..and very low fees. ANd the idea of not having to do any maintenance outside is appealing, so I am reconsidering. I wonder how it would be having kids in a townhouse and having them outside running around everywhere. This community has a walking trail and lots of open space.

  2. #2

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    I lived in a townhouse when the girls were little and had no problems what so ever! We have a closed in courtyard in the back so the girls played there all the time.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    6,874

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    My SIL lives in a townhouse community, as does a good friend. It's a good setup for them. Lots of amenities, low maintenance. The kids have lots of friends in the neighborhood.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Ottawa, Canada
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    I lived in a town house until we bought this house... but we didn't have condo fees (What Canadians call HOA I suppose?) and it was fine. We had more then enough room, the only thing I disliked was people parking on the street because they didn't have enough parking in their driveway. So I was always scared I would hit someone backing out hehe. I wish we still had it, it saved a lot of money... and it didn't feel that much smaller. Everyone was always good with our oldest running around, and there were other neighbor kids too to play with as well.
    .~Becky~.



  5. #5

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    It would really depend on the community and amenities. I swear there are townhouses in this area which are much better than a house IMO - they have community pool, playgrounds, other playgrounds close by, trails, open green spaces. I would totally live in one of those. But there are other communities where I would not be happy to live with kids.
    KEVIN (6) & MATTHEW (4)

  6. #6

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    Thanks for your responses!! In our old community, we had a pool that we never used, and there were a lot of single, older men and older couples...there was one family that I remembered, and they rarely left the house and kept the blinds drawn at all times.

    This community did not appear to have many amenities which is probably why the monthly fee is so low. I guess I would want to know if there are other families around. On the other hand, our next door neighbors have 3 boys, ages 2-6. Mine are 3 and 5. They never play together. There are also kids across the street, and supposedly down the street, but everyone is inside or at daycare all day. As it is now, we meet up with other moms and their kids at playgrounds nearby. We don't have a level lot for a swingset, so we are used to going somewhere. But we really want a place to at least have for them to run around and chase balls and ride their bikes.

    I calculated the square footage, and with the finished basement, it is really close to what we have now. Plus, a lot of our square footage is wasted on a marge master bedroom and a large foyer.

  7. #7

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    Personally I would never give up my privacy and personal space to live in a townhome. Not to mention the possible can of worms that could be opened with neighbor issues. I have too many friends who have been in huge fights with neighbors over things their kids or neighbors kids did, stuff you just don't have to deal with all that much when you are not living right on top of each other. Your kids is playing too loud, your kid scratched my car, your kid broke my window, your kid hurt my kid...etc. Just sounds like a headache...I would much rather be peaceful in my own, detached, home.

    ~*~Katrina~*~ Momma to Xander, Hayden & Lily (6) and Jericho (3 1/2)
    Trying to complete our family...My Ovulation Chart for my LAST try !

  8. #8

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    We just moved from a town home apt to our Habitat home for us our mortgage is about 60% less than the town home as most places around here a mortgage usually runs so...... much cheaper. We have a one story and our town home was a two story. There is no way in h*** I would ever want to live in an apartment again nor a town home to be very blunt which because of the Habitat program for having a low mortgage we wouldn't ever lose our home. With kids living in a town home sucked because all of the bedrooms and clothes were upstairs and laundry is one of my struggles because there is so much of it. I would forget about things because our living room and kitchen was downstairs. It was very hard to keep up for me. Even if we never would have qualified for Habitat we would have looked into Rent to own. I don't miss the screaming kids from other neighbors, I don't miss the drafty windows and other people's smoke leaking into our home, I would happy mow the grass at a home to save our privacy than to live in another apartment ever again. I do have strong feelings about this sorry to be so blunt its just the truth as I see it. It might not be that way for everyone depending upon your geographical area and the cost of living.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by TripMomma View Post
    Personally I would never give up my privacy and personal space to live in a townhome. Not to mention the possible can of worms that could be opened with neighbor issues. I have too many friends who have been in huge fights with neighbors over things their kids or neighbors kids did, stuff you just don't have to deal with all that much when you are not living right on top of each other. Your kids is playing too loud, your kid scratched my car, your kid broke my window, your kid hurt my kid...etc. Just sounds like a headache...I would much rather be peaceful in my own, detached, home.
    Thanks, but where we live, regardless of whether it is a townhome or not, we are basically on top of each other, based on our price range anyway. We have a large detached house with a lot of property, and if we continued to stay here, we would continue the battle with my next door neighbor who put a broken rake as a "gift" to me on my front lawn when I was pregnant and didn't rake the leaves right away and who just piled all his leaves right over the property line onto ours this year. So, I think that neighborly issues can happen anywhere. We have had more neighbor issues here with them and another set of neighbors and their pre-teen kids than we had when we lived in a townhome where we had no issues whatsoever with neighbors.

    Quote Originally Posted by mom2CodySophia0811 View Post
    We just moved from a town home apt to our Habitat home for us our mortgage is about 60% less than the town home as most places around here a mortgage usually runs so...... much cheaper. We have a one story and our town home was a two story. There is no way in h*** I would ever want to live in an apartment again nor a town home to be very blunt which because of the Habitat program for having a low mortgage we wouldn't ever lose our home. With kids living in a town home sucked because all of the bedrooms and clothes were upstairs and laundry is one of my struggles because there is so much of it. I would forget about things because our living room and kitchen was downstairs. It was very hard to keep up for me. Even if we never would have qualified for Habitat we would have looked into Rent to own. I don't miss the screaming kids from other neighbors, I don't miss the drafty windows and other people's smoke leaking into our home, I would happy mow the grass at a home to save our privacy than to live in another apartment ever again. I do have strong feelings about this sorry to be so blunt its just the truth as I see it. It might not be that way for everyone depending upon your geographical area and the cost of living.
    Thanks for your insight! I actually prefer having more than one level for a home. Ours right now is 3-stories, and I love it. We looked at a one-story, and I felt that we were all on top of each other, so I think with that, it's really just a preference. The smoking thing is legitimate. I never had issues with that when I lived in apartments or townhouses before, but I could see how that could bean issue.

    Another thing is that the townhouses are also newer, so they require less in terms of upkeep, so that is a way of saving money for us. It's not the mortgage that is really killing us here since it's pretty low. It's the cost to heat this house, repair aging systems, and the maintenance of the grounds. We have a million trees and plants on our property, and we have to contract a landscaper just to have it look presentable, but we could really hire a full-time gardener.

    I drove by the house today again, and I saw a some elderly people, and lots of cars parked in the middle of the day, which leads me to believe that there may be more older people there, which could be an issue having kids (especially 2 very loud, energetic boys). On the other hand, my DH travels 2-4 nights per week, and I had to call 911 one night because of people harassing me late at night, and there have been a few other times where I almost called. So, I think I might feel better being home alone so much knowing that there are neighbors so close by.

  10. #10

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    It must be a regional thing. There are some townhouses here that are brand new, spacious and designed so you just share one wall. It still could be a PITA. But across the street from us, there is a new development and these townhomes are gorgeous, they range from 1500-2300 sq.f. I think the HOA fees are about what my detached house has; in california, most newer communities have HOAs and often time detached houses have 2 HOAs. So that's why I am saying that a townhouse IME is not necessarily worse and I would consider it but I would imagine it is different from one area to another.
    KEVIN (6) & MATTHEW (4)

  11. #11

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    And most of the areas in OC have small small yards so not much privacy unless you have an older house in certain areas, which has a whole lot of other concerns
    KEVIN (6) & MATTHEW (4)

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