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Canada - Property Options and Types

When you are purchasing property in Canada you should be aware that there are many different types of homes to choose from, particularly in the urban areas. For example, if you are purchasing in the area around Ottawa you may find some Cape Cod style homes. These are more commonly found along the Atlantic coast areas of Canada but there are some available in the city. These houses are usually symmetrical and have dormer windows. There will usually be a bedroom on the ground floor of the property but there two floors to the house. These are not the largest houses that you can find in the area and are usually no more than 2000 square feet.

More commonly seen in urban areas is the colonial style house and these are usually found in more affluent areas of the cities. These are larger properties and usually have fairly large gardens. These are detached properties, but there are also detached properties in other styles. Semi-detached houses are also available in the cities. Detached and semi-detached properties will usually have some outdoor space, at the very least a small garden.

In many parts of the country there are small houses which are referred to as cottages. In rural areas this usually describes a fairly small house but the term is being used increasingly to describe any smallish house in an urban area. This type of house will normally have no more than two bedrooms and limited living space, usually one room and a kitchen and in some homes this may be a large kitchen with some living space. In rural areas these usually have a reasonable amount of outdoor space although less so in the urban areas.

Urban areas are also home to duplexes. These are buildings which have two separate living units and the buildings are usually detached. This is very similar to an apartment and these are popular in the suburbs of the cities. Urban areas also have many Victorian style homes that may have either two or three floors. Some of these houses are period properties while others are modern buildings which have been modelled on the style.

Bungalows are a popular property option in many areas. Some may have a basement but many do not. These vary in size and there are many neighbourhoods which consist only of bungalows. One type of bungalow that you may find is a ranch bungalow. This is designed so that the bedrooms sit on one side of the house and the other rooms are on the other. In some areas the bungalows are designed so that the bedrooms are at the back and the living areas are at the front. There is usually a reasonable sized garden with this type of property.

Townhouses usually have more than two storeys and are terraced houses. These are city homes and usually are found in neighbourhoods which have many similar houses. Outdoor space in this type of property is usually limited. These often lead directly onto the street so there is no garden area at the front and the rear gardens are normally quite small. Apartment buildings are now becoming the most popular property option in most cities and these range from purpose built modern buildings to converted warehouses and other buildings. Apartment buildings do not normally have outdoor space although some do have a communal garden. The most that a resident can expect is a balcony but not all apartments have these. Apartment buildings will have other communal areas too, such as parking, laundry rooms, gymnasium or storage areas.

Property sales are divided between new build properties and resale homes. In rural areas it is mainly resale homes as there are many areas which restrict building practices. In the cities there are many new developments of houses and apartments and the suburbs are expanding all the time with new developments of houses. New builds in rural areas tend to be limited to those who have purchased land with the intention of building their own family home. Buying off plan is a popular option with those who want a new build property at a slightly lower price.

Other ownership options include fractional ownership or shared ownership schemes, but the majority of these are intended as holiday timeshares rather than full residential options.

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