Adjusting to Living in a Condo

When we first moved into our condo, I really had to adjust my thinking. We had gone from a tiny house with a decent sized yard to a bit larger condo with a tiny yard.The additional living space was greatly appreciated, but the area available for gardening was greatly reduced.

At our house, I had a vegetable garden that was about 12 x 12, I had 2 flower beds each three feet wide and thirty feet long that ran along each side of the yard, and a fair amount of lawn between. By contrast, the back yard of our condo is about 16 x 27 or 432 sq.ft. The front has a foundation planting and a three-foot wide strip of grass boarding the parking lot.

But it wasn’t only the difference in the square footage. We had lived in a house (you own the building and the land it is on) and in apartments (where you don’t own anything), but condos are different. You own, in effect, from the sheetrock in. The exterior of your building is taken care of by the condo association, as is the lawn and shrubbery. In fact, your yard – both front and back – is considered a “commons,” shared with all other condo owners. That meant that my neighbors could, in theory, come tramping through my back yard any time they wanted. So much for a privacy. Fortunately, in practice, they very rarely ever did.

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