Townhomes can offer greater affordability than buying a single-family home, but some people would prefer not to have the obligations that come with condominium-type ownership.

That’s why fee-simple townhomes have appeal, as the buyer owns the land outright and their townhome on it, doing away with things like traditional condo fees.

Josh McCormick is an area sales manager in Jayman Built’s Cornerstone Townhomes Sales Centre, where the company offers three fee-simple townhome models.

McCormick says no condo fees also means no risk that fees might go up in the future.“So you can put all that money into your mortgage, and build up your equity,” he said.

Jayman’s fee-simple townhomes include backyards, he says, but since the units are attached, the entire development uses less land than single-family homes, making the purchase price more affordable.

McCormick says the company’s Cornerstone units have two or 2.5 baths and two- or three-bedroom layouts that provide a lot of flexibility.

One model can even be configured with up to six bedrooms, by adding two more in the basement.

Homes by Avi is selling fee-simple, two- and three-bedroom street townhomes of its own in the new communities of Belmont, Livingston and Carrington – all of them with “no condo fees, no condo board, and no surprise special assessments.”

Doug Beach, vice-president of Homes by Avi’s single-family Alberta division, says that like a single-family home, the company’s street townhomes include a private yard, which comes fully fenced and landscaped.

“You have a single-family lifestyle with all the benefits of attached living.” – Doug Beach, Homes by Avi

Beach says you get to take care of your own property but don’t have to share or contribute to costs of “common property,” or split utility costs with other owners.

“You only pay for what you use,” he said.

Homes by Avi also seeks to make its attached townhomes as quiet as a non-attached home, with a specially engineered “Hush-Hush” adjoining wall system that uses offset wall studs, extensive insulation, an air gap and other techniques to eliminate sounds between units.

Beach says street townhomes are available with a rear-detached garage, or a parking pad with space for a future garage. “So they could go ahead and put a garage in themselves later on and save the $20,000 or $25,000.”

He adds that while the “no condo fees” aspect stands out, the other pluses of a fee-simple townhome can also make it a good fit for a buyer.

“You have a single-family lifestyle with all the benefits of attached living,” he said.