How to define a town home?

A townhouse (known as row house or terraced house) is a single-family multilevel home that are not standalone but shares one or more walls with one or more neighboring units. Townhouses are often constructed in more centralized, in-town locations closer to amenities than detached subdivisions and each unit is individually owned. On average, townhouses tend to range from 1,500 to 3,000 square feet in size. Most typically fall in the 1,800 to 2,400 square foot range, with 3 bedroom configurations and 1 en-suite and 1  guest bathroom or in total 2 to 3 bathrooms.

The concept of townhouses originated in Europe, particularly in England, during the medieval period. They were initially intended to provide housing for the working class in urban areas. Townhouses were designed to make efficient use of limited space in densely populated cities, often featuring multiple stories and a narrow footprint. Over time, townhouses have evolved to encompass a wide range of architectural styles and have become popular in urban areas around the world.

In 2024 it is economically more affordable and effective to buy a town house rather than an apartment and  buyers are getting more square footage for their money compared to apartments.

Owning a townhouse can be a good long term investment, especially in desirable locations where property values are likely to increase.

The key attributes of a townhouse compared to a detached single-family home are that townhouses provide more affordable home ownership, require less exterior maintenance, and allow living in more central/urban locations. However, townhouses offer less privacy and individual outdoor space than detached homes.

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George Nicola

George is a seasoned interior designer and property marketing strategist with over 13 years of experience. He specializes in transforming properties into visually stunning spaces, helping clients recognize the potential and beauty in each property. With an impressive international client base of exciting projects throughout Europe and America.

Townhouses are becoming an increasingly popular choice for homebuyers in the United States. These multi-floor homes share one or two walls with adjacent properties, providing a compromise between a detached house and an apartment. They can be a great option for those who enjoy living close to their neighbors while still having their own space.

In the strict architectural definition, a townhouse is a multistory, single-family dwelling that shares at least one wall with another house or townhouse and is not to be mistaken with condo or detached house. Unlike duplexes or fourplexes, each townhouse is individually owned and has its own entrance. Many people use the terms townhouse, condo, and duplex interchangeably, but they are not the same thing. It is important to understand the differences between these types of properties before making a purchase decision.

Real estate experts suggest that townhouses are a good investment for those looking to buy a property in a desirable location. 

They are often located in urban areas and offer easy access to public transportation and amenities such as shops and restaurants. Additionally, they tend to be more affordable than single-family homes, making them a popular choice for first-time homebuyers.

How large are on average townhouses?

On average, townhouses tend to range from 1,500 to 3,000 square feet in size. Most typically fall in the 1,800 to 2,400 square foot range.

A town home kitchen featuring vibrant colors and intricate details.
A town home kitchen featuring vibrant colors and intricate details.

To expand on typical townhouse sizes:

  • Smaller townhouses: Usually around 1,500 – 1,800 square feet with 2-3 bedrooms and 2-2.5 bathrooms. Would be similar to a small single family starter home. Better affordability due to lower square footage.
  • Mid-sized townhouses: Approximately 2,000 – 2,400 square feet is average for many townhouse developments. This generally includes 3 bedrooms, 2.5-3 bathrooms, and a 2-car garage. Offers reasonable space for many families or couples.
  • Larger/luxury townhomes: Some higher end townhouse communities feature units upward of 2,800 – 3,000+ square feet. This allows for 4 or more bedrooms, more bathrooms, larger garages, and high-end interior features. While less common, caters to buyers desiring extra space.

Pros and Cons of Townhouse Living

Living in a townhouse has its advantages and disadvantages. Here are some of the benefits and potential drawbacks of townhouse living.

A woman walking her dog on a street in a townhouse neighborhood.
A woman walking her dog on a street in a townhouse neighborhood.

Advantages of Townhouses

Affordability

One of the primary benefits of townhouse living is affordability. Townhouses are usually less expensive than single-family homes, making them a great option for first-time homebuyers or those on a budget. Additionally, townhouses often come with shared amenities like pools, gyms, and playgrounds, which can save residents money on gym memberships and other recreational expenses.

Exterior Maintenance

Another advantage of townhouses is that exterior maintenance is usually taken care of by the homeowner’s association (HOA). This means that residents don’t have to worry about mowing the lawn, shoveling snow, or other exterior maintenance tasks. The HOA fees may increase over time, but it is still a convenient option for those who don’t have the time or energy to maintain their own property.

Space

Townhouses are typically more spacious than apartments or condos, offering more room for families or those who need more space. They also often have multiple levels, which can provide more privacy and separation between living spaces.

Security

Townhouses can offer increased security compared to single-family homes. With neighbors sharing walls, it can be easier to keep an eye on each other’s homes and notice any suspicious activity. Additionally, many townhouse communities have gated entrances or security guards, adding an extra layer of protection.

Potential Drawbacks

Upkeep

While exterior maintenance is taken care of by the HOA, residents are still responsible for the upkeep of their own interior space. This includes cleaning, repairs, and upgrades, which can add up over time.

Lack of Privacy

One of the potential drawbacks of townhouse living is the lack of privacy. With neighbors sharing walls, noise can be an issue, and residents may feel like they are living in close quarters. Additionally, townhouses often have shared outdoor spaces, which can be a concern for those who value their privacy.

HOA Fees

While HOA fees can be convenient for exterior maintenance, they can also be a potential drawback. HOA fees can be an added expense that must be factored into the budget, and they may increase over time. Additionally, some residents may not agree with the HOA’s rules and regulations, which can cause tension within the community.

Characteristics of Townhouses

Townhouses are typically taller and narrower than single-family homes, and they share one or more walls with neighboring units. They are often designed for high-density urban environments, but can also be found in suburban and rural areas. Townhouses usually have a small outdoor space, such as a backyard or patio, and may have a shared common area, such as a pool or playground.

A group of people standing in front of a house holding a sign that says townhouses are cool.
A group of people standing in front of a house holding a sign that says townhouses are cool.

One of the defining characteristics of a townhouse is that it is a single-family dwelling that shares at least one wall with another unit. This means that townhouses have some of the benefits of single-family homes, such as privacy and outdoor space, while also sharing some of the benefits of multifamily housing, such as shared amenities and lower maintenance costs.

1600s Townhouse Facade

In the early 17th century, English townhouses featured wood timber framing with wattle and daub or brick infill between the beams and pronounced gables.

Multi-paned casement windows provided light while limiting cold drafts. Decorative half-timbering and elaborate stonework details gave dimension. Chimney stacks conveyed fires used for heating and cooking. The impression was structural, fortress-like solidarity.

today's Townhouse Facade

Contemporary 21st century townhouses utilize wide spans of glass, steel, metal panel systems and composite sheathing with clean lines for a sleek, airy aesthetic. Floor-to-ceiling windows, skylights and sliding glass doors connect indoors and outdoors.

Exteriors range from brick veneer to stucco and lap siding with minimal trim. Rooftop solar paneling supplements eco-sustainability. The overall appearance is openness and integration with nature’s light.

A watercolor painting of a townhouse.
A watercolor painting of a townhouse.

Comparative Analysis

  • Materials: Advances in technology have introduced a wider array of building materials for townhouses in modern times.
  • Style: While 1600s townhouses adhered to more limited architectural styles of the period, contemporary design allows for vastly greater stylistic expression.
  • Function: 1600s facades were primarily focused on the structural integrity of the home. Modern facades can incorporate elements enhancing energy efficiency, natural light, and aesthetic appeal.

1600s Townhouse Layout

  • Vertical Living: Typically 3-4 stories with narrow footprints to maximize space in dense urban settings.
  • Ground Floor: Often used for commercial purposes (shop or workspace) or a basic kitchen and storage.
  • Main Living Areas: Located on upper floors, potentially with a grander parlor or receiving room at the front and more private chambers towards the rear.
  • Limited Specialization: Rooms served multiple functions, with spaces for dining, sleeping, and work less rigidly defined than in modern homes.
  • Attics and Basements: Used for storage and sometimes additional servant or apprentice quarters.

Today's Townhouse Layout

  • Diverse Floor Plans: Still often multi-story, but with a wider variety of layouts to suit different lifestyles.
  • Ground Floor: Can be a dedicated entryway, garage, or sometimes living space.
  • Open-Concept Design: Popular for main living areas, combining kitchen, dining, and living for a social flow.
  • Specialized Rooms: Dedicated bedrooms, bathrooms, home offices, and flexible spaces are the norm.
  • Outdoor Space: Modern townhouses often incorporate patios, balconies, or rooftop decks, which were less common in the 1600s.

Comparative Analysis

  • Space Utilization: 1600s townhouses prioritized verticality due to limited urban space, while modern layouts can be more expansive with varying room sizes.
  • Privacy: Modern townhouses place greater emphasis on private spaces (bedrooms, bathrooms) for individual occupants.
  • Functionality: Rooms in 1600s townhouses served multiple purposes, whereas contemporary layouts allow for greater specialization to accommodate modern lifestyles.
  • Connection to the Outdoors: Limited in older townhouses, modern design prioritizes natural light and access to outdoor areas, even if small.

What are the common areas in townhouses?

Shared outdoor spaces, recreational facilities and infrastructure are hallmarks of most townhouse developments to offer amenities to residents without individual upkeep requirements. HOA fees fund the maintenance of these common areas.

The other common shared areas found in townhouse communities include:

  1. Landscaping and green spaces: Townhouse complexes often have communal grass areas, planting beds, trees and gardens that are maintained by an HOA or property management company. This saves residents from having to do all exterior landscaping individually.
  2. Community pool: Many townhouse developments have a shared swimming pool and pool house that all residents can access. This provides a recreational area without each unit needing their own pool.
  3. Clubhouse: Some townhouse communities have a clubhouse with amenities like a fitness room, lounge area or reservable party room available to residents.
  4. Playgrounds: Townhouse neighborhoods aimed at families sometimes have playground equipment, tennis courts or basketball hoops for children and recreational use.
  5. Parking lots: In addition to garages or driveways for residents, shared guest parking spaces are common across townhouse complexes.
  6. Roadways and sidewalks: The streets, roads and walkways leading throughout and connecting the townhouses are communally owned and maintained.

Townhouse vs. Other Housing Types

Townhouses are often compared to other types of housing, such as single-family homes, condos, duplexes, and rowhouses. While each of these housing types has its own unique characteristics, townhouses are distinct in several ways.

Compared to single-family homes, townhouses are typically more affordable and require less maintenance. However, they may have less privacy and outdoor space. Compared to condos, townhouses offer more privacy and outdoor space, but may have higher maintenance costs. Compared to duplexes and rowhouses, townhouses are usually taller and narrower, and may have more shared amenities.

Overall, townhouses are a popular housing choice for those who want the benefits of both single-family homes and multifamily housing. They offer a balance of privacy, outdoor space, and shared amenities, making them an attractive option for many homebuyers.

Historical Context

Evolution of Townhouses

A watercolor painting of a courtyard with plants and furniture in a townhouse.
A watercolor painting of a courtyard with plants and furniture in a townhouse.

Townhouses have a rich history dating back to the 16th century in Europe. They were originally built as single-family homes for the upper class. In England, townhouses were referred to as “terraced houses” due to their shared walls with neighboring homes.

The design of these homes evolved over time, with some featuring ornate facades and intricate details.

As townhouses became more popular, they began to be built for the middle class as well. The design evolved to include more practical features such as multiple floors and a basement. In Boston, for example, townhouses were built with a basement level that was used as a workspace or storage area.

Townhouses in North America

Townhouses made their way to North America in the 18th century and quickly became a popular form of housing. In Philadelphia, townhouses were built with a distinctive architectural style that is still seen today. These homes typically have a brick facade, wooden shutters, and a small garden in the front.

In New York City, townhouses were built in rows and shared walls with neighboring homes. These homes were often built with ornate facades and intricate details, and they remain a popular form of housing in the city today. Many of these homes have been renovated and restored, and they are highly sought after by buyers.

Townhouses have a rich history that spans over several centuries. They have evolved over time to meet the needs of different classes and cultures, and they remain a popular form of housing today.

Ownership and Legal Aspects

When it comes to townhouses, there are two main types of ownership structures: homeowners association (HOA) and condominium. Each has its own set of rules, responsibilities, and restrictions.

Homeowners Association (HOA)

In an HOA, the homeowners own their individual units and share ownership of the common areas. The HOA is responsible for managing the common areas and enforcing the rules and regulations. The HOA board is typically made up of elected homeowners who make decisions on behalf of the community.

HOAs often charge monthly or annual fees to cover the cost of maintaining the common areas, such as landscaping, pools, and clubhouses. They may also have restrictions on things like exterior modifications, parking, and noise levels.

Condominium Ownership Structure

In a condominium ownership structure, the homeowners own their individual units and share ownership of the common areas, but the ownership of the land and the building is divided among all the owners. The condominium association is responsible for managing the common areas and enforcing the rules and regulations.

Condominiums often have more restrictions than HOAs, such as restrictions on pets, renting out units, and exterior modifications. They also often charge monthly or annual fees to cover the cost of maintaining the common areas and building.

It is important for potential townhouse buyers to understand the ownership and legal aspects of the community they are considering. They should review the HOA or condominium documents carefully before making a purchase to ensure they understand the rules, responsibilities, and restrictions that come with owning a townhouse in that community.

Financial Considerations

When it comes to buying a townhouse, there are several financial considerations that buyers need to keep in mind. In this section, we will discuss the cost of buying a townhouse, maintenance and HOA fees, insurance, and other costs associated with owning a townhouse.

Cost of Buying a Townhouse

A drawing of a cozy town home master bedroom.
A drawing of a cozy town home master bedroom.

The cost of buying a townhouse can vary depending on several factors, including location, size, and amenities.

New townhouses may be more expensive than existing ones but offer modern features and customization options. The cost to build a new townhouse averages between $175,500 and $243,500, depending on the region and customization, more bedrooms and bathrooms the higher the price. Additional to that price most townhouse communities have HOA fees that cover maintenance, security, and amenities averaging $200-$300 a month or $3,000 to $4,000 a year.

For example in Philadelphia, PA the median asking price of townhomes in Philadelphia, PA is approximately $211,779. The high-average price is $279,900 and at the same time the average price of townhomes in Houston, TX is around $232,790. The highest average price is $470,000 for a townhome in the area.

Buyers should consider their budget and financing options carefully before making an offer on a townhouse. Closing costs, which include fees for title insurance, appraisal, and other expenses, can also add up quickly. It is important to factor these costs into the overall cost of buying a townhouse.

After all excess possessions and furniture are removed, do an intensive deep clean throughout the entire property.

  • Wash all windows inside and out until they sparkle and smear-free. Clean window frames too.
  • Scrub floors thoroughly – vacuum and mop tile/vinyl, steam clean carpets, and deep clean grout lines.
  • Clean all appliances inside and out, including the stove, oven, refrigerator, dishwasher, and washer/dryer.
  • Wipe down cabinets, drawers, and counter tops until they are completely free of grease and dust.
  • Disinfect all bathrooms – scrub tile, sanitize sinks, showers, tubs, and toilets. Descale faucets.
  • Dust all surfaces – baseboards, ceiling fans, vents, light fixtures, furniture tops and corners.
  • Wash all linens and window treatments. Replace if stained, torn or worn out.
  • Power wash patios, decks, sidewalks, driveways and exterior surfaces as needed.
  • Make any necessary repairs – fix leaky faucets, paint touch ups, caulking, etc.

The goal is to completely eliminate all dirt, stains, odors, and grime throughout the home to prepare it for staging. A spotless, like-new home shows best.

If you are on the market to buy or invest in a town house, avoid areas with struggling economic conditions, distant and poor schools, urban sprawl, high crime areas, and stagnant development present challenges for townhouse investments to yield optimal returns over time. Also research what future development is allowed, as it could impact the area’s character and your property’s value.

To identify a good area to invest in a townhouse, prioritize locations with strong economic growth, highly-rated schools, proximity to amenities, low crime, and new development, as these indicate higher future demand.

Maintenance and HOA Fees

Townhouses are typically low-maintenance compared to single-family homes, but they still require upkeep.

Buyers should be aware of any maintenance costs associated with owning a townhouse. Additionally, many townhouses are part of a homeowners association (HOA), which can require monthly or annual fees. These fees can cover a variety of expenses, such as landscaping, exterior maintenance, and community amenities.

The most common issues that can arise with HOAs and townhouses include:

  1. High or rapidly increased HOA fees – The fees which residents pay to the HOA for maintenance and services can become unreasonable over time if the HOA mismanages funds.
  2. Poor management – An incompetent, unresponsive or overly strict HOA board and property management group could provide poor services while limiting owners’ freedoms.
  3. Lack of maintenance – If an HOA poorly oversees the community’s common areas, facilities can deteriorate along with property values. Neglected issues like structural damage or rodents can also spread to individual units over time.
  4. Disagreements between neighbors – Living in close proximity and sharing walls can lead to frequent neighbor disputes about noise, use of common spaces or conflicting unit modifications, made worse under strict rules.
  5. Special assessments – Large, urgent, and unexpected community repairs like roof replacements or lawsuits can require the HOA to levy special assessment fees beyond the regular dues.

Essentially if an HOA isn’t run smoothly or sustainably, it directly impacts townhouse owners through rising fees, restrictions, disputes and unexpected costs from poor management decisions or inadequate planning. Researching an HOA thoroughly before purchasing reduces potential issues down the line.

Insurance and Property Taxes

For townhouses, the type of homeowners insurance required depends on whether there’s a homeowners association (HOA). If there’s an HOA, you will typically need condo insurance (HO-6), which covers the interior of your unit and personal belongings.

If there’s no HOA, standard homeowners insurance (HO-3) is needed, which covers both the interior and exterior of the home, as well as liability coverage. 

The average annual cost for homeowners insurance with $250,000 in dwelling coverage is around $1,272, but this can vary based on location, size, and other factors

Property taxes are another cost to consider. These are based on the assessed value of the property and the local tax rate. The average homeowner pays around $2,471 per year in property taxes, but this can vary significantly by location.

As a townhouse owner, you’ll be responsible for some degree of maintenance and repairs. This can include interior maintenance and, depending on the terms of the HOA, some exterior maintenance as well. Budgeting 1% to 2% of the property’s value annually for maintenance is a common recommendation.

  • Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI): If your down payment is less than 20%, you may need to pay PMI until you reach 20% equity in your home.
  • Emergency Expenses: As a homeowner, you’re responsible for emergency repairs, which can be costly and unpredictable.

Buying a Townhouse

Buying a townhouse can be a great investment for first-time homebuyers, families, or those looking to downsize. The process of buying a townhouse is similar to buying any other home, but there are a few things to keep in mind.

Searching for the Right Townhouse

The first step in buying a townhouse is to determine what you are looking for. Consider factors such as location, size, and layout. Make a list of your must-haves and nice-to-haves, and use these criteria to narrow down your search.

Once you have a list of potential townhouses, it’s time to start shopping. Use online resources such as real estate websites and social media to find available townhouses in your desired location. Attend open houses and schedule tours to get a better sense of the properties you are interested in.

Working with Real Estate Agents

A real estate agent can be an invaluable resource when buying a townhouse. They can help you find properties that meet your criteria, negotiate on your behalf, and guide you through the buying process.

When working with a real estate agent, it’s important to find someone who is experienced in buying and selling townhouses. Look for agents who have worked in your desired location and have a good reputation in the industry.

Finalizing the Purchase

Once you have found the right townhouse and have worked with your real estate agent to negotiate a fair price, it’s time to finalize the purchase. This involves signing a purchase agreement, securing financing, and closing the deal.

During this process, it’s important to work with a qualified lender who can help you secure the financing you need to purchase the townhouse. Be sure to read and understand all of the terms of the purchase agreement before signing, and work with your real estate agent to ensure a smooth closing process.

Overall, buying a townhouse can be a great investment for buyers of all types. By following these steps and working with experienced professionals, home buyers can find the right townhouse for their needs and secure a great deal on their investment.

Architectural Features

Townhouses are unique and have their own set of architectural features that distinguish them from other types of residential buildings. These features include the exterior design, interior layout, shared spaces, and amenities.

Exterior Design

Townhouses are typically multistory, single-family dwellings that share at least one wall with another unit. They are attached to each other in a row, creating a uniform appearance from the outside.

Townhouses can come in a variety of architectural styles, ranging from Federal style to Queen Anne style, with each style having its own unique features. The façade of a townhouse is usually symmetrical, with a central entrance and evenly spaced windows. The ground-to-roof wall is usually uninterrupted and may contain bay windows, dormers, or other decorative elements.

Interior Layout

The interior layout of a townhouse is similar to that of a single-family home. It typically has two or three stories and a similar floor plan to a detached home.

The rooms are arranged in a linear fashion, with the living room and dining room on the ground floor and the bedrooms on the upper floors. The shared walls between units provide some noise insulation and can also serve as a design element, with some townhouses featuring exposed brick or other decorative elements.

Shared Spaces and Amenities

Townhouses often have shared spaces and amenities, such as private driveways or garages, smaller outdoor spaces, and shared amenities like a pool or gym.

These shared spaces and amenities provide residents with a sense of community and can also help to lower the overall cost of living in a townhouse. The shared walls between units also provide some security, as neighbors can keep an eye on each other’s homes and report any suspicious activity.

Lifestyle and Community

Living in a townhouse offers a unique lifestyle that is different from living in a detached house or an apartment. This section will explore some of the lifestyle and community aspects of living in a townhouse.

Privacy and Neighbor Relations

Townhouses offer more privacy than apartments because they are not stacked on top of each other. Since townhouses share walls with their neighbors, it is important to have good neighbor relations. Most townhouse communities have rules and regulations in place to maintain a peaceful and harmonious community. By following these rules, townhouse residents can enjoy a good relationship with their neighbors.

Community Facilities

Most townhouse communities have amenities that are shared by the residents. These amenities can include a swimming pool, gym, clubhouse, or park. These facilities offer a great opportunity for residents to socialize and get to know their neighbors. By participating in community events and activities, townhouse residents can build strong relationships with their neighbors.

Location Benefits

Townhouses are often located in urban or suburban areas that are close to shops, restaurants, and other conveniences. This makes it easy for residents to run errands and enjoy the local amenities. Additionally, townhouses are often located near public transportation, making it easy for residents to commute to work or school.

Townhouse Developments by Region

When it comes to townhouse developments, there are different types of areas where they can be found. Two main categories are urban centers and suburban complexes.

Townhouses in Urban Centers

In many urban areas, townhouses are an attractive option for those who want to be close to the city center. In New York City, for example, townhouses can be found in areas such as the Upper East Side, the West Village, and Park Slope. These townhouses are often historic, with unique architecture and design features. Many of them have been renovated and updated to include modern amenities.

Chicago is another city where townhouses are popular in urban areas. In neighborhoods like Lincoln Park and Lakeview, townhouses offer a combination of urban living and suburban-style amenities. These townhouses often feature outdoor space, such as a rooftop deck or backyard, which is a rare find in many urban areas.

San Francisco is another city where townhouses can be found in urban areas. In neighborhoods like Pacific Heights and Noe Valley, townhouses offer a combination of luxury and urban living. These townhouses often feature high-end finishes and amenities, such as a private elevator or a rooftop garden.

Suburban Townhouse Complexes

In suburban areas, townhouse complexes are a popular option for those who want to live in a more residential setting. In California, for example, there are many townhouse complexes in suburban areas such as Irvine and San Jose. These complexes often offer amenities such as a pool, clubhouse, and fitness center.

In addition to California, there are many suburban townhouse complexes in other parts of the country as well. These complexes can be found in areas such as the Northeast, the Midwest, and the South. They often offer a combination of suburban living and urban-style amenities, such as a walkable neighborhood or proximity to public transportation.

Conclusion

Townhouses are becoming increasingly popular for good reason. They cater to various lifestyles, from first-time homebuyers seeking affordability to those downsizing from larger homes but desiring a sense of community. If you value a balance of private space, shared amenities, and a convenient location, exploring townhouses in your area is a worthwhile endeavor.

What defines a good area to invest in a townhouse?

A thriving job market and business investments set conditions for housing appreciation, making an area desirable.

Similarly, top-ranked school districts directly attract families to live in the area, increasing townhouse appeal.

Accessibility to retail, entertainment and transit also boosts an area’s draw for convenience and commute efficiency.

Moreover, low crime rates translate to better maintenance and community building to maintain safety, while active new construction signifies room for townhouse investment growth not yet saturated.

Here are the main things that define a good area to invest in a townhouse:

  1. Job and Economic Growth: An area with a strong and diverse job market and economic expansion indicates rising demand for housing, making townhouses more likely to appreciate. Research local job trends and development plans.
  2. High-Ranking School District: Top-rated public schools that families seek out can drive townhouse demand in that district, boosting investment value. Look at school quality reports and ratings.
  3. Amenities and Public Transit Access: Convenient access to retail, entertainment, parks and public transportation is desirable. Analyze walkability scores, maps of key amenities, and transit options.
  4. Safe Neighborhoods: Low crime rates and community involvement lead to better maintained, more appealing towns. Check recent crime statistics and safety scores.
  5. Developer Involvement: Areas with ongoing builder investments and new/upgraded townhouse stock have stronger incoming buyer interest. See where development is concentrating.

Does townhouses have a basement?

Yes, many townhouses do have basements, though basement inclusion can vary across different townhouse developments, but it’s not a universal feature.

  • New Construction – Most new-build townhouse complexes will include a basement as standard in their units. This provides space for utilities, storage, a spare room, etc. Basements are more easily incorporated into the initial design.
  • Existing Home Conversions – Some townhouses are created by converting old homes or warehouses into attached multi-unit complexes. These often won’t have full basements due to existing foundations.
  • Finished vs. Unfinished – Townhouse basements may be unfinished utility spaces or remodeled into an extra living room, bedroom, office, gym etc. Finished bases can significantly expand usable square footage.
  • Regional Trends – Northern/Midwestern towns more commonly integrate basements due to climate. Townhouses in southern warmer climates are less likely to build them by default.