Ph (Propiedad Horizontal) - Pros And Cons?

Noruega

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Hello! I wanted to ask about PHs - it seemed to me like a good way to get something a little bit more similar to a house, but at an apartment price. But some of my friends seem to think that they come with a lot of potential problems:
- Because there are no or very little fees, sometimes nothing is done about any common areas
- There can be legal issues, or you can be stuck with someone's else's old phone bill because the units all share the same address (no 1432 A, B, C, for isntance)
- Seen as less safe, especially if there is a shared entrance (one I looked at had a shared front door and then four units from a shared pasillo)

I am looking for something that has character, preferably old, and I really don't want a cookie cutter apartment, and some things that I find interesting in my price range are PHs. What do you think?

(And this is of course in addition to the other discussion, whether I am crazy for thinking about buying something now!!)
 

nikad

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Out of your concerns, I think the most important is number one. The rest is not really relevant imho
 

Meri

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Hi there - this topic is top of mind for me because I'm leaving an apartment I've lived in for a couple of years for a PH next weekend (although I'm renting not buying). I feel like you - want something with character, more of a housey type feel, etc. I also had a friend who lived in a PH and fell in love with its charm. I'm a tad nervous about the lack of security but I have a dog who barks like a lunatic when anyone comes to the door....I am going through an agency so I don't have so much to worry about with bills and things like that but I've heard flooding can be an issue in PHs - I guess that and security would be my top concerns. Still - I'm really excited for the change and love the uniqueness of them.
 

Matiasba

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I own a PH and buying it was the best decision. There lots of advantages like small expenses, great quality construction, with wide walls and tall roofs, with the posibility of an entrepiso and also the fact that you have almost no neighbours, comapring to a building. There was a boom in the 90s with the PHs, especially in Palermo, most of them were recycled and turned into great aparments. Multiplied value for 10 or even more.
 

syngirl

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Sometimes the pasillos are left looking like crap conscientiously -- as a security decision. I know friends of mine bought in one in Almagro, and they hated their entrance, hoped to convince the neighbours to repaint it, redo it. As we all said, it looked like the entrance to a crackhouse. After getting to know their neighbours (and seeing the insides of their places), they learnt that they had decided to leave the pasillo as is -- because from the street anyone seeing it would just walk on thinking there's no way there's anything of worth inside -- but all of the PHs with the exception of one had been completely renovated to relatively luxury standards inside.
 

Davidglen77

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PHs are nice if you like that house type feel but have an apartment budget. The thing with PHs are is that some of them were built that way and some (really old ones) were built as single family houses and later subdivided into apartment units and can have wierd layouts and configurations of rooms. I would avoid the PHs units that are the ones that are all the way at the end of a really narrow long hallway as they feel creepy to me. The nicest ones have 2 floors and face both to the street and the bedrooms internally. Also make sure that you have the escribano carefully analyze the by-laws (reglamento) so that you know exactly what your unit is responsible for in terms of maintenance and repairs. Another alternative is to look for an apartment in a small building with 5-10 units. They usually don't have an encargado which = low expensas and have less drama as many times they are self managed (no administrador).
 

Meri

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Ha - hilarious! The one I'm moving into definitely looks like a crack den on the outside....
 

ajoknoblauch

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We inherited part-ownership of a PH in Congreso, where one of our nephews lives. The common areas are badly rundown and nobody (including us) really wants to invest anything in it. I think you'd have look at this on a case-by-case basis.
 

ajoknoblauch

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You might end up next to http://en.deturismoargentina.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/Restaurant-Tegui-palermo.jpg
 

Noruega

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Everyone, thanks SO much for answering! This is great to know. I guess I am not that concerned with the front looking ugly, I agree it can be a good thing, it was more the fact that the front door wasn't locked the second time I went there, and that someone could easily come in and jump the fence into "my" patio. My friend thought that someone in the neighborhood could easily identify me as a foreigner and then try to break in. He was even worried that the neighbors in the same pasillo might break in..

In this particularl one, it seemed like flooding wasn't an issue - no water had come in during the huge rainstorm this past week.

The PH is in Caballito, on Paysandu and Galicia. Any opinions on the area? I have gone with two friends, one who loved it and one who was a little worried about the security. I would love to find something nice that I can afford in Villa Crespo, really like that area.
 
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