There are advantages of renting a home, rather than buying. When people talk about living the American Dream, it generally includes owning a home, and preferably, of course, one with a white picket fence. It’s a picturesque idea, but it’s not really for everyone. Depending upon your stage of life, your financial situation, and your future plans, there are some very good reasons why it makes much more sense to rent a great apartment home than it does to buy a home.
5 Advantages of Renting A Home Rather than Buying
If you’re trying to decide what you should do, consider these benefits of renting:
1. Should you Buy or Rent? If you Rent – No High Upfront Costs
When you’re renting, the only upfront cash payment is your deposit, which is typically one to two month’s rent.
When you’re buying, it’s one thing to qualify for a mortgage. It’s another to come up with the cash you’ll need before you even make that first monthly payment.
- An advantage of renting is no down payment. This is the biggest chunk of cash you’re probably ever going to need in your life. Although you can get loans with lower down payments, the benchmark figure is 20 percent of the sale price of the house. Saving that amount can take a long time, and borrowing it from family or against a 401(k) retirement plan, for example, poses other issues. The one thing you don’t want to be is “house poor,” with all of your available resources tied up in your house and nothing available for emergencies like illness or loss of a job.
- Closing costs. You think you’re out of the woods and then you’re hit with sale closing costs that include realtor’s commissions, mortgage loan fees, escrow and title company fees, inspection fees, appraisal fees, and pro-rated property taxes. Closing costs average an additional 2 to 5 percent of the purchase price.
SF Gate gives some good tips and information about the advantages of renting vs. buying a home or apartment.
2. Apartment Advantages could mean Access to Lifestyle Amenities
When you buy a house, what you see is what you get. Maybe you’re in the enviable position of being able to buy a house with a pool, a tennis court, a fully-equipped gym, or whatever other amenities would make you happy. If that’s the case, go for it! Otherwise, you’ll have to search all that out elsewhere.
But, if you’re looking for apartments for rent in Ontario, CA, for example, you can move into a community with amenities that rival the best in resort living. And the best part may be that you never have to worry about taking care of them.
3. No Maintenance Worries or Costs
When you buy a house, you’re buying every problem that comes along with it. Appliances stop working, plumbing fails, roofs leak, windows break, trees need trimming, ants take up residence, air conditioners quit on the hottest day of the year, etc.
Every once in a while, the whole place needs to be painted, too, and so on and so on. It’s all inevitable and just part of living. The same things happen when you’re renting, of course, but you’re not the one on the line for fixing them.
Lifehacker gives tips whether you should buy or keep renting.
4. Renting Could Be Safer if you’re a Traveler
Renting is a particularly good choice if you travel for work or just like to take off for time away on the spur of the moment. All you’ve got to do is make sure you turned out the lights and didn’t leave the oven on, and you’re free to lock the door and go.
Someone else is responsible for watering the lawn and making sure the trash is collected. You’ve also got no worries about something happening to a house while you’re gone. And, with the security of most rentals, you don’t have to be concerned about break-ins, either. When you have a leasing company they also can give you tips on how to keep your rental secure, as well as the advantages of renting.
5. More advantages of renting: You Can Move When You Want To!
If you’re renting, you can move when your lease is up to accommodate a change in jobs or other plans. If you own a house, you can be stuck where you are for a lot longer than you’d like to be if market conditions don’t favor a quick sale. And that’s another thing. The real estate market can be volatile and you might find yourself needing to sell when it would be more financially advantageous for you to hold on. For more advantages of renting and information on the financial aspects of renting versus buying, check out this article from affordanything.com.
For more home rental and moving tips on Stagetecture, look through our archives here.