6 Problems You Won’t Have to Deal with If You Never Buy a House
Having the keys to your own house probably feels pretty great. But I’d argue not many people remind themselves about the myriad issues homeowners have to deal with.
In my case, buying a house feels like a pipe dream. Even so, folks who do accomplish that goal might find themselves in a nightmare scenario or two, whereas I’ll be maintaining my peace as a renter. Here are a few of the problems you’ll never have to deal with if you don’t become a homeowner.
You won’t feel homebuyer’s remorse.
Remember that last time you bought a pair of pants in a rush — only to find out you didn’t like them that much when you got home?
It was a $30 mistake you probably hid in your closet. Imagine making a $300,000 mistake you can’t hide — because you’re living in it! I’m guessing homebuyer’s remorse is not a nice feeling, and I’m glad I won’t have to deal with it.
You won’t have to deal with a 30-year commitment.
Few people can afford a house that checks all of their boxes nowadays, and most have to get a mortgage to do so.
Naturally, each mortgage comes with different terms. It could be a 15- or 30-year loan, have high interest rates, and so on. Me? I can hardly decide what I’ll have for dinner, let alone where I’ll want to live in five years. Committing to staying in one place for more than a decade, never mind paying for that place for more than a decade, isn’t in the cards. I prefer the flexible, freewheeling nature of renting for the time being.
You won’t need to learn about (or pay) property taxes.
Homeowners have to deal with something called property taxes. How much they’ll cost, when you have to pay, and what you get in return depends on a lot of things, starting with where you live. A lot of the time, though, property taxes are a costly bill on top of your mortgage.
Fortunately, I don’t have to deal with that because I don’t own a house. In contrast, I know how much in rent I have to pay each month for a year. I know it’s due on the first of the month, and I know I get a roof over my head for paying it. While I realize rent can increase from year to year, my rent and utility bill are still cheaper than what a mortgage — plus property taxes — would cost in my area.
You won’t be on the hook for costly renovations.
The basic gist of a house is four walls and a room (and a bathroom, hopefully). The real deal is way more complicated than that: it has wires, pipes, insulation, and other important stuff.
And a lot can go wrong inside a house. For example, you could have a leaky roof in the middle of winter — which is as fun as it sounds. Homeowners need to foot the bill when something goes wrong, of course. If you’re renting, paying to repair the issue is your landlord’s problem. I love that maintenance is my landlord’s problem, because my savings could not take that kind of hit.
You won’t get stuck with lousy neighbors (for long, anyway).
I lived next to very loud neighbors for close to a year. I’m not talking about guys fond of blaring music. I’m talking about someone who had a workshop in his house.
Waking up on a Saturday morning to the sound of a drill is a funny anecdote now — but only because I moved out long ago. And I had little trouble doing so because I was renting that house.
You won’t see the grass on the other side looking greener.
The thing is, renting boils down to having options. Owning a home gives you stability, but that could mean you may find yourself a little too stable in an unpleasant situation. Bad neighbors, expensive repairs, long mortgages, and a few more things won’t be part of your repertoire — if you rent.
What’s the best part of that? When the grass on the other side looks greener, you can pack your bags and rent the house over there!