House hunting is an exciting time for prospective buyers, especially first-timers. However, all of the real estate lingo can be confusing for a first-time buyer.

“Single-family home” is a term that buyers will frequently hear during the house-hunting process. We’ll explain what a single family home is and what the benefits of owning one are.

Characteristics of a Single-Family Home

A single-family home is a freestanding structure that is used as a single dwelling. This is different from condos or townhomes that often have multiple units and living spaces in one building.

Listed below are some characteristics of single-family homes that separate them from other types of residential properties.

No Shared Walls

Unlike townhouses, condos and apartments, single-family homes do not share any walls with their neighboring structures.

One Kitchen

Single-family homes only have one full-size kitchen with a stove and oven. You’re probably thinking, what about houses that have a guest suite? It’s not uncommon for guest or in-law suites to have a kitchenette. However, kitchenettes are different from kitchens; they do not come with a stove or oven.

Property

When you purchase a single-family home, you own the parcel of land that the house sits on. Whether you live on an acre or a zero-lot-line property, you own the entire lot. This includes the front, back and side yards.

Access Points

Apartment and condominium buildings have hallways or entranceways that lead directly to the street, and they are shared among residents. In contrast, a single-family home has its own private access to the street.

Benefits of Single-Family Homes

Although it varies by geographic region, single-family homes are the most common type of residential property in the country. Although buying a home is a personal decision, many homeowners choose single-family homes for the benefits below:

Privacy

With no shared walls or floors, single-family homes give you more privacy than other types of residential buildings. If your neighbor decides to try Beachbody or another high-intensity workout, you won’t hear them jumping around or running in place. That also goes for neighbors who listen to music at the highest volume possible.

Room for Expansion

Do you plan to grow your family in the future? With a single-family home, you can always build out another bedroom or convert your garage into a playroom. But if you purchase a condo or a townhouse, it would be hard or very unlikely for you to expand your home.

Storage Space

Single-family homes are prefect for homeowners that need extra storage space. They typically have basements, attics and/or garages that can store your golf clubs, family mementos, tools and seasonal clothing, to name a few commonly stored belongings. Due to their smaller size, condominiums and townhomes have limited space for storage.

More Freedom

Have you always dreamed of having a rose garden or a baby blue-colored house? Owning a single-family home gives you more control over your exterior space. Because the units are attached in condo and townhomes, you are unable to change the exterior paint color. Depending on the type of townhome that you live in, you may not have a say in the landscaping either.