Housing is designed to meet physical needs:
protection from the weather such as
temperature, humidity, rain, snow, wind, and
sunlight. It also provides a place for sleep,
food preparation and eating, and a place of
safety for individuals and their possessions.
Housing is designed to meet psychological
needs: providing a sense of love and
belonging when shared by roommates or
family or in a community; gives a sense of
identity when it reflects individual tastes,
values, attitudes, personalities, and
lifestyles; allows for creativity
Housing needs are influenced by the life
cycle stage of the individual, from
infancy to old age. Factors to
consider when choosing your home
1. Personal and family needs
handicap accessibility; location
to schools and shopping or
transportation; number of
bedrooms and space for family
2. Personal and family preferences
beauty, prestige, comfort, easy
convenience, reflection of
3. Financial resources
A single family dwelling sits on its own piece of land , which
is sold with the home, and it is not attached to anyone else's
residence. Subject to neighborhood and subdivision
regulations and ordinances, you can do with it as you wish.
Homeowner stands the cost of all insurance, and interior and
exterior maintenance and improvements including lawn care
and snow removal. This is the most expensive type of
housing, but it can be considered an investment and resale
value is usually good.
TRACT HOUSES are built by a developer who subdivides a large piece of
land into lots. He adds the improvements (streets, street lights, water and
sewer lines), and then builds houses on the lots using just a few basic
plans. Models of the basic plans are usually available for viewing, and the
limited number of designs keeps prices down. The developer may even
help with financing. The price of the house is fixed, but they are criticized
as “cookie cutter houses” because of the monotony of designs.
CUSTOM BUILT HOUSES are the most
expensive of homes, designed and built to
meet the needs and preferences of a
specific household. Individuals may hire
architects to design the home, or purchase
stock plans and modify them as needed.
Usually, each custom house is unique in
it’s design, tailored for specific individuals
and certain building sites.
It is difficult to lock in the price of a
custom home. As construction
progresses, the homeowner often makes
changes that raise the cost.
MANUFACTURED HOUSES are built in a factory and installed on the home site,
but often on a temporary foundation such as a concrete pad. They must meet
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) construction
requirements. If built before the 1976 HUD Code, they were commonly called
mobile or trailer homes.
MODULAR HOUSES are factory-built and installed on-site, like manufactured
homes, but are often placed on a permanent foundation such as a basement.
Modular homes meet local building codes while manufactured homes meet
HUD design and construction requirements. Manufactured and modular homes
are less expensive than other single family dwellings, and require a short
construction time (about 3 months).
A townhouse is a home that is attached to
one or more other houses, but which sits
directly on a parcel of land that you also
own. Townhouses can range from
duplexes and triplexes all the way through
huge townhouse communities consisting
of hundreds of similar homes.
A “townhome villa” may be included in
this category. They are actually individual
houses, but operate through associations
like other townhouse communities.
and require dues to do some exterior
maintenance or provide and maintain
joint amenities such as pools, gyms,
etc. There may be better security than
single family dwellings, but are usually
less expensive. Some noise from
A condominium is like an apartment that you own.
Your ownership extends inward from your interior
walls, floors and ceilings. In addition, you are a
partner, with all of the other owners in the complex, of
the exterior structure (the foundation, exterior walls
You and your
and roof) and land as well as any common areas and
amenities (for example, swimming pools, clubhouses,
services, costs, noise,
tennis courts, play areas, etc.)
etc. Condos are
Cooperatives are similar to condominiums, but
instead of buying an apartment, the owner buys stock usually less expensive
than single family
in a management corporation and receives an
apartment in return.
No ownership; noise from neighbors;
limited or no responsibility for interior or
exterior maintenance; limited ability to
personalize interior; monthly rental costs
usually lower than cost of ownership but
no investment or resale value
Three or more units in a common building.
A facility that offers rooms for rent and provides meals.
Efficiency / Studio
Typically a one-room unit with an enclosed bathroom
and limited kitchen facilities.
For someone who needs assistance while moving toward independent
living, such as youth that are not ready to live on their own or paroled
inmates or recovering addicts.
Temporary housing for people to stay who have no permanent housing.
ASSISTED LIVING FACILITIES provide a
special combination of residential housing,
personalized supportive services and care. It
is appropriate for an individual who needs
assistance with one or more daily care
activities, such as preparing meals, dressing,
bathing, or taking medications.
NURSING HOMES or Skilled Nursing Facilities,
are designed for seniors who are in need of 24hour nursing care. They are expensive.