I miss a few things about being a renter. Some experts claim renting beats buying. Unless I planned to move around every year, I wouldn’t rent. I purchased a home during the housing bubble. Even though I bought a house at what some say was the worst possible time, I am now in a better position than renters in my neighborhood. It took about a decade for the advantages of home ownership to finally become apparent. According to a recent article by The Motley Fool, there are 6 ways renting is more advantageous than buying a home. I still think I’m better off as a homeowner who stays put.
Paying low costs upfront
According to The Motley Fool, renters don’t have as many upfront costs. I beg to differ. Not only did I have to pay first and last month’s rent when I lived in an apartment, I also needed a security deposit for my pet. When I moved out, I had to kiss my deposits goodbye because of a few small stains on the carpeting. As a homeowner, I did put down a down payment, but that only lowered my mortgage payment. Most renters can’t lower their monthly rent.
Having a fix-it landlord
Another advantage of being a renter is that the landlord has to make routine repairs. I pay $900 a month for my mortgage, while renters pay $1,500 to live in the same exact model in my neighborhood. I don’t spend $600 a month on repairs. If I saved that $600 a month, I’d have more than enough to replace all the appliances in my home every year. It’s just as much of an inconvenience for me to call to have a repairman visit my home as it is for a person to call a landlord to come fix a leaky faucet.
Taking care of the lawn
According to The Motley Fool article, renters don’t have to worry about landscaping costs. Some renters in my subdivision do work it out with the landlord to mow the lawns themselves. Most renters don’t spend a lot of time cultivating flowers or plants. I like to garden. I was upset as a renter because the landlord didn’t want me to grow a garden on “his” property. To me, having the freedom to grow plants on my property is a major advantage of home ownership.
Enjoying other perks
Renters who live in a rental community that offers a gym, pool, hot tub or clubhouse may argue they save money on gym memberships. I owned a townhome in a gated community that offered all of those amenities and more. People who rented out their townhomes simply charged a rent that covered the cost of the fees. If anything, the renters probably paid more for the amenities than the homeowners.
If I had been renting for the past decade, I’d have no trouble ending my lease. I doubt I’d get a security deposit returned to me because it never happened in the past. If I sold my home for the going price, I’d walk away with about $80,000. It’s not a fortune, but it makes me glad I chose homeownership over renting for the past decade.
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