(I've got another CRAZY good post for everyone this week!! My good friend Alyssa at GenerationYRA.com is going through what a lot of what the rest of us are going through right now: Do you keep renting or buckle down and buy that house?? If you don't usually sound off on the blog – today is the day to jump in and let people know what you think. And yes, that is my future castle if you were wondering…dream big homies.) – M$M
Sitting on a wraparound front porch, an iced tea in my hand. The condensation running down the sides of the glass as I take another satisfying sip. My wonderful husband on my left, sitting content as we watch our kid(s) play with the family dog running in tow. A lush yard & wonderful neighborhood in front of our eyes…
How do you envision your future home to be? Or for current Millennial homeowners, is your first home shaping up to be exactly what you thought it would be?
It's a mind struggle. This match in my thoughts of renting versus buying clamors back and forth like a tennis ball striking the rackets of those in the last match at Wimbeldeon. Sometimes I desire the reality of the serene story I depicted above, but I just cannot quite fathom homeownership just yet.
The idea of taking on a mortgage for 30 years weighs heavily on me. That's 30 years of principal, interest, taxes, insurance and life changing events all wrapped into one complete package of the largest amount of debt I will potentially ever take on (granted, I know there are ways you can accomplish paying off a mortgage in less than 30 years, but speaking hypothetically).
I slam numbers into the calculators that depict renting vs. buying, and somehow I always end up with a different result of what I would like to see. One moment, I am fed up with paying out of pocket a rent expense that does not build equity, that also faces surmounting increases from year to year.
The next, I feel glory behind the flexibility of taking on new adventures without the burdening thoughts that my water heater, roof, or a large appliance of the like is about to bust. It's difficult to comprehend the following financial obligations tied into the responsibility of paying off a mortgage for 30 years.
I may not know the complete intricacies of real estate, and all that home ownership vs. renting can truly offer. Advice in regards to home ownership comes from multiple angles when you're in your 20's.
Yet, there are a few things as a Millennial that I'm experiencing when tackling whether to rent or buy at this given point in my life. In a condensed list I'm going to depict my mental 50/50 split:
Reasons To Continue Renting
1. Freedom and flexibility
Want to get out for the weekend? Great! No yard-work, or fixing up around the house is put off that I couldn't quite get to during the week. Ready to take on that next step in life that requires moving to a new city? Awesome, no need to worry about getting the house market ready to sell. Feel like traveling for more than a few months? No worries about a home being left vacant, or looked after. Renting provides much more flexibility to experience life than being tied to a major asset.
2. Glorious amenities
Oh, so you would like a pool, built-in WiFi, gym, air conditioning, and access to various community relaxation centers & events? You've got it! All of these amenities are typically built into rent expenses at various complexes and neighborhoods. No need to add on to your monthly list of expenses when it's already offered where you live.
3. Monthly fixed expenses
Depending on where you rent, most instances your utilities are offered at a fixed rate (or taken on by your landlord in some cases). This means no ghastly surprises when certain winters experience subzero temperatures, or summers turn out to be scorchingly hot. When utility expenses are fixed it makes it more feasible to budget accordingly without fluctuating utility surprises.
Reasons To Consider Buying
1. Building equity
No more paying off a landlord's mortgage, or sending a check to a property management company. Instead, I could be building equity into an asset that serves as one of my biggest investments. For once, I could experience an appreciating asset (when the housing market, or my chosen location is doing well), versus depreciation.
2. Starting a family
Digging roots into a city I truly want to call home. My living situation could finally experience a sense of permanency. No more renewing/signing leases, putting down security deposits, or incurring moving expenses every 1-2 years. I can truly live in a place where memories can be created with my family just like my childhood days.
3. Ownership Pride
I imagine standing outside in the front yard holding the keys to our first new home (my fiance/soon-to-be husband and I!) with silly little grins on our faces. The pride of owning a home that is yours to make memories, decorate, and update however you please.
The 50/50 split of renting versus buying will continue to be an ever-increasing match in my mind. When it comes down to it, the idea of taking on a huge amount of debt to purchase a home is challenging to grasp. Yet, the payoff could be incredibly amazing.
Question for you:
Do you prefer renting or buying, and why?
If you want to see the total opposite situation from the M$M castle, check out last week's really popular post about a couple living in a camper to pay off debt!