Does a Townhouse Have a Backyard?

People longing for a place to call their own may find that a townhouse will suit their needs. It offers more space and amenities than an apartment but doesn’t have all the responsibility of a single-family home. Townhomes can be bought or rented, making them an affordable solution. 

Is there a backyard in a townhouse? It depends on the property. Some townhouses have a balcony or patio with no backyard. Others have both front and backyard spaces, although they are smaller and far less private than a traditional home. 

Read further to find out more about backyards you will find at townhouses. 

The Maintenance Question of Townhouses

One of the advantages of living in a townhouse is less maintenance. This is true whether you buy one or rent. Townhouses are typically two or three stories because they are built vertically on smaller lots.

They are narrow structures with no one living below or above them, although they are attached on the sides with neighboring townhomes.

That means most of the maintenance is going to be with the house and not the yard. Most are built either attaching to neighbors townhomes on both sides with a shared street or sidewalk in front so there isn’t must green space on the front or back. 

The townhouse may have a small bit of landscaping on the front but that depends on where it’s located. Most are found in metro areas so there is a greater chance of seeing more concrete than grass. 

Townhomes found in the city’s outskirts are more likely to have green space both in front of it and in the back. 

Those who buy townhouses will be responsible for the upkeep of both the house and the yard. Renters will depend on the landlord or planned community association to maintain the property. That includes landscaping. 

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Backyards for Townhouses

A couple of configurations exist for backdoor spaces for townhouses. One is a concreted backyard space where you could put a firepit and a couple of lawn chairs. Another option is a small fenced greenspace shared with adjoining neighbors. 

A third option is to have a common area for all the townhouses located around the green space perimeter. 

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Little Privacy

The one marker that makes a townhouse different from a single-family residence is a lack of privacy. There aren’t any that offers a private backyard. Those that offer backyards share their green space with other townhouses. 

Townhouses typically share exterior walls with neighbors, like an apartment, so you will see and hear them when they are home. You will also see them in the backyard, especially on nice days. 

That could mean checking with your neighbor before you have family or friends over for an outdoor barbecue or social function. 

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More Rules

Townhouses are now built-in planned communities with Home Owner’s Associations (HOAs) governing conduct, rules, and maintenance of the neighborhood. 

Rules are different for every townhome community. Many of those rules include the use and maintenance of yard space. Some typical rules are that you can’t hang towels or clothes on the patio, and no pets or put restrictions on the type of pet allowed. 

These can include whether you can have a dog, a cat, the breed, and a weight limit. Rules can also exist regarding picking up poop on walks and while pets are playing outside. 

Other rules could revolve around leaving out personal items like grills, toys, and chairs. These may need to be stored either on your deck or somewhere else out-of-sight on the property. 

Some townhome communities may have a rule against ball playing in the backyard areas near homes. There could also be rules against things like fireworks, parties, and noise on the property, all of which could affect your backyard use. 

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Landscaping and Gardening

Most HOAs provide landscaping for shared spaces. Those who want to landscape their areas will have HOA rules to follow. Some communities require written consent before you do anything like start a garden or add flowers or bushes. 

You may be able to start a potted vegetable garden or plant flowers in boxes. However, it’s best to check the HOA rules in case there is a limit on what you can do. 

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Why do they call it a townhouse?

The name townhouse is a historical reference to when people had a smaller home in town and a larger single-family home in the country. Now, it refers to homes built with vertical space in mind. 

What are the primary differences between a townhouse and a single-family home?

The amount of square footage is the primary difference between a townhome and a traditional house. Townhomes are usually much smaller. The other difference is in the layout. Townhomes are built taller so they have narrower rooms and halls. 

Another difference is a townhome is usually attached to other townhomes where they share the street and exterior walls. 

What’s the difference between a townhouse and a condo?

Condos are larger, nicer versions of apartments. You can buy a condo where apartments are rented. A townhouse, which can also be bought or rented, is a vertical version of a smaller house. 

While both townhouses and condos are attached to neighboring structures, the layouts of townhouses are different from those of condos.

What do you own when you buy a townhouse?

Those who buy a townhouse own the land the structure sitting on. This includes all the green space in both the front and backyard that goes with the home. The size doesn’t matter. Even the smallest spaces are owned by the townhouse owner. 

Purchasing a townhome means the owners must maintain the exterior of their townhouses and yards. They may also be responsible for maintaining the interior, depending on the contracted purchase.

What is a group of townhouses called?

Those in a row of more than three are called rowhouses in some areas. Two townhouses together are called either townhouses or semi-detached homes. They can be called a half-duplex in Canada.

How many floors does a townhouse have?

Townhomes can have up to four stories. Most have three or four stories with the main common areas on the first floor. Some smaller townhouses or rental townhomes have two stories. 

Can a townhouse have gardens?

Townhouse gardens can provide a soothing outdoor space but may require a lot of approvals from HOAs and neighbors to become the backyard courtyard garden many desire. 

Are townhouses more affordable than other residences?

Townhouses are usually more expensive than an apartment but are less expensive to buy than a single-family home. 

Why do people buy townhouses?

Those who buy a townhouse are people who need more room and no longer want to rent an apartment. A family will enjoy more space than what they had in an apartment. 

A townhome is a good choice for someone wanting to buy land but can’t afford to purchase a traditional single home. Many use it as a transition between renting an apartment and buying a single-family home.

Is it easy to sell a townhouse?

It can be easy to sell a townhouse if you tap into the right market. Buyers look at the townhouse itself but are also highly interested in the amenities and community perks.