Rain Jordan of Bailey Properties here.
I believe that a single family house is usually the best bet. Consider, for one, eventual resale value: HOAs and their fees scare off many potential buyers. Other hindrances including lack of land, size, privacy, peace (noisy neighbors, for example), and, often, natural light. Houses, on the other hand, do not typically have those hindrances, at least not to the same degree, and typically SFR properties can be redeveloped (added on to, for example). Add to that the fact that there are some great deals still out there on houses right now, and all signs seem to point to HOUSE!
I do not believe that prices will get much lower here. Coastal properties in this area, I believe, are going to stabilize and recover. (See the Market News section of my website for a recent article on this topic.)
Feel free to email or call me to chat further; I'm happy to speak with you anytime.