On the fence about renting or buying? First, you should probably hop off that fence and think about which option is more beneficial for you. Many people choose to rent instead of buy for a variety of reasons (which will be explained below, I promise). If you’re considering both housing options, here are some things to contemplate.
1. Zero Cost for Apartment Maintenance
Renters have the advantage when it comes to maintenance and repair costs in the apartment. They have zero cost. Not that tossing out spoiled food from a fridge on the fritz, or cleaning up the aftermath of an overflowing toilet, is fun – but the cost to repair said issues will fall into the hands of the landlord rather than the renter. Tenants in need of apartment repairs and maintenance will submit a work request to the leasing office for problems that include broken appliances, plumbing, electricity, pest control, leaking roofs, etc. Homeowners have to pay for everything mentioned above.
2. Less Money Required Upfront for Renting
At a lease signing, you’ll be asked to put down a security deposit rather than a down payment. The difference is that a deposit is generally one month of rent, which you have the opportunity to get back in full at the end of your lease contract. When you buy, a down payment is expected to be paid by the homeowner to the lender to lower the financial terms of the mortgage. The ideal down payment for a house is 20 percent of the offer if you want to avoid paying private mortgage insurance (PMI).
3. Flexibility to Upsize, Downsize, and Go Wherever
You might choose to buy a home if you want to put down roots. Renting, however, gives you the flexibility to discover and explore all types of neighborhoods if you’re unsure of where you’d like to be long-term. In apartment living, it’s not a one-size-fits-all floor plan situation. Renters have the opportunity to upsize, downsize, and move freely to another apartment once the lease has ended. If your job has you moving around a lot, renting might be the better option.
4. Less to Worry About
Wavering property values and taxes are real estate issues that homeowners deal with, not renters. Property taxes are worked into the cost of the rent.
5. Fun Events Minus the Fees
Apartment living doesn’t include payment of monthly homeowners association (HOA) fees. What do these fees cover, you ask? HOA fees pay for the cost of upkeep in the common areas of the neighborhood, maintenance of amenities, and neighborly get-togethers. Apartment communities offer their residents a plethora of yearly events without the associated cost. Pool parties and holiday-themed gatherings could be in your future! Sign me up, pronto.
6. (Typically) Less Space to Clean
Houses are generally much larger than apartments, so there’s a whole lot more space and corners to keep clean. Dusting baseboards and ceiling fans, scrubbing floors and showers, and sanitizing counters can take an incredible amount of time to finish in a house. Depending on the size of your apartment, you’ll typically spend less time cleaning and more time doing whatever you want.
7. Lower Cost of Insurance
Compared to homeowners insurance, renters insurance is very affordable. Renters pay less than $200 on average for the year, whereas homeowners can spend more than $1,000 to cover their home. Renters will discover several additional benefits of renters insurance in addition to the cost.
8. Cheaper Utility Bills
Although size and utility rates can vary, it’s generally cheaper to heat and cool an apartment versus a home. A compact floor plan can lessen the blow to your bank account when paying off utility bills. Renters can see even greater savings by renting a utilities-included apartment. Sweet deal, huh?
9. No Mortgage Debt
Some may argue that there is good debt and bad debt — and that taking out a mortgage is considered good debt. If you’d rather forgo debt, renting is a good option because you don’t need a mortgage, just a deposit. Additional costs may include a pet deposit or moving fees, but it’s still so much cheaper than taking out a mortgage.
10. Full Access to Amenities
Renters relish in the luxury of having apartment amenities accessible outside their front door. On-site fitness center, swimming pool, valet trash, and pet perks are some of the special amenities renters can enjoy when renting an apartment.
Everyone’s housing journey is a tad different. For those who are navigating towards the rental side, get ready to bask in the thrill of dough-saving potential, free community events, the utilization of thoughtful amenities, cleaning less, and moving when it’s convenient for you.