Thekiantra Morriston
December 15, 2022

What are the differences between low-rise, mid-rise and high-rise apartments?

Residential buildings such as Apartments come in many forms. Knowing the differences between the types can help you choose a suitable place to live. Apartment building styles can vary slightly depending on where the building is located. We've all seen busy city blocks lined with high-rise apartment buildings. Meanwhile, in the suburbs, garden-style apartment and townhome communities that blend seamlessly with surrounding single-family homes are common. Deciding which style of building you want to live in is often determined by your desired location, size requirements, personal preferences, and even your lifestyle.

What is low-Rise Apartment?

Garden apartment communities (sometimes also called low-rise apartment communities) consist of several smaller buildings – usually four stories or less – located on a large property. Garden-style apartments are most often found in suburban or rural areas, either in established residential communities, or near major highways.

One of the main attractions of garden-style apartment communities is the green space with lots of trees, bushes, shrubs, and maybe even a playground. Garden-style communities often have large outside spaces, providing easy ways to exercise and a place to play for children.


  • Smaller building with fewer occupants.
  • More living space for a lower price than high rise buildings.
  • Pet-friendly options are common.
  • Closer to the parking area which is usually right outside the apartment unit.
  • Easy access to outdoors.


  • No elevator. If you live on the top floor or have a lot of things to carry, you will have to take the stairs.
  • Many garden-style apartment communities offer fewer amenities than high- or mid-rise buildings.
  • Outdoor parking is standard in parks or low-rise apartment buildings, which can be difficult during inclement weather.

What is Mid-Rise Apartment?

Mid-rise apartment communities can often be found in cities and suburbs. Mid-rise apartment buildings are shorter than high-rise buildings, consisting of five to 12 floors. This means they may have lifts and include amenities such as swimming pools and community rooms.


  • Mid-rise apartments usually offer more facilities than garden-style apartments.
  • Fewer walks than garden style apartments and less elevator waiting time than high rise buildings.
  • More privacy than crowded high rise buildings.
  • Many mid-rise apartments offer more private outdoor space than high-rise ones. Imagine a large terrace or balcony where you can entertain family and friends. (Just remember: no barbecue grills allowed)


  • Depending on the location, noise from the street and traffic can be annoying.
  • Some communal spaces are shared and lack privacy, for example, a mid-rise might have a communal laundry area instead of an in-unit washer and dryer.
  • Package delivery difficulties, especially if there is no dedicated lobby or doorman.

What is a High Rise Apartment?

High-rise apartment buildings are more commonly found in urban areas or cities where horizontal space is limited. High-rise apartment buildings usually have at least twelve floors, meaning residents use elevators to get to and from their apartments. High-rise apartment buildings will have hundreds of residents and often many facilities and events that aim to bring people together.


  • Great views, especially on the higher floors.
  • Parking (where available) is usually indoors or covered, which is a huge advantage in winter.
  • The best amenities include a swimming pool, fitness center, gathering area, lobby, and sometimes a concierge or 24-hour front desk.
  • Street and traffic noise is getting less likely the higher it is.


  • More communal or shared space, including elevators, hallways, stairways, mail rooms, and trash and recycling areas.
  • Getting to and from your car takes more time if you have to wait for lifts and navigate parking garages.
  • Limited private outdoor space. If you have a balcony, consider yourself lucky and make the most of it.

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