When it comes to buying an apartment, there is lots to consider including location and proximity to public transport and amenities. However, one of the main factors that should be taken into account is whether to buy on the ground floor or higher up. There are many pros and cons to each, and at the end of the day it comes down to personal preference of the buyer or renter, but demographics and the suburb should also be considered to know what this market looks for. Pros for Ground Floor Apartments
Here are our pros and cons for both ground floor apartments and higher level apartments.
Cons for Ground Floor Apartments
- Courtyard: One of the biggest perks of having a ground floor apartment is that they usually come with a courtyard that tends to be much larger than a balcony. This creates much more space and can act as an outdoor dining area, as well as a play space for children. You can also use this space for messy jobs such as DIY projects, gardening and painting. Pet owners also enjoy the luxury of a ground floor apartment as their dog or cat has more space to run around.
- No stairs: A second pro is that there are no stairs, which is particularly helpful for an ageing demographic and those that find stairs difficult. If the lifts are not working, then you can still access your apartment.
- Cooler temperatures: Living on the ground floor also tends to be cooler as heat rises, allowing residents to be more comfortable on hot sunny days and may save energy costs by not having to use the air conditioner or fans during the hottest parts of the day.
- Neighbour Noise: Finally, you have no neighbours below you so don’t have to worry about bothering them with foot noise, especially if you have children who tend to jump around, stomp and run.
Pros for Higher Level Apartments
- Lack of privacy/security: If the apartment faces the street then there tends to be a higher security concern, particularly within inner city areas and these apartments are easier to break into. There is also less privacy, so you may need to cover windows with blinds or curtains to stop the whole world looking into your home.
- Noise and Disturbance: It tends to be noisier living on the ground floor as you have foot traffic passing by as well as vehicle traffic which may include buses and trains and the noise created from rubbish collections.
- Less Light: There may be less light in a ground floor apartment, so you may have to switch your lights on more.
Cons for Higher Level Apartments
- Views: The views greatly improve the higher up you go, with the best views from the top level. If the apartment faces in the right direction overlooking the city or water, they can attract a premium price when selling.
- Balcony: You may be lucky enough to have a balcony which creates extra space to use for entertaining and dining.
- Increased security and privacy: Apartments that are higher up tend to have a smaller chance of a break in due to being further away from street level with windows that are not accessible.
- Less noise: Being further away from the street also means you are likely to have less noise created from foot or vehicle traffic.
- More natural light: You can benefit from turning those lights off as higher level apartments usually have more natural light and are less likely to be overshadowed by tall buildings.
- Warmer temperatures: As heat rises, higher level apartments may produce more heat during the hot summer months, which means turning on the air conditioner and fans more often to keep the apartment cool. This can increase your energy bills.
- Reliance on lifts: You become more reliant on lifts to reach your apartment. This means when a lift breaks down, you may have a long hike up to your apartment with groceries by stairs. This is not appealing for retirees.
- Noise: You might have to keep foot noise to a minimum to avoid disturbing the neighbours below you. You may also have noisy neighbours above you too.
So what apartment should you go for? It really depends on the suburb you live in and the market may influence your decision. Generally, the highest level apartments are the ones with the best views and experience greater capital growth, whilst ground floor apartments are more appealing for retirees and families with children who can make the most of the added space.
Published on 20th of October 2014 by Marty Stanowich