There are clear advantages and disadvantages to renting versus buying an apartment or house. For example, small families may hesitate about buying and prefer to wait until their family size has grown and in need of the space.
Purchasing a home or an apartment requires more than just money down and a mortgage payment, but also property tax, HOA fees, and preservation at the owner’s expense, which may put renting in favorable light. Your #1 factor will come down to finances, so you can determine what you can actually afford. Other factors should also be considered and play into your decision.
Below are a few tips to help guide you on the pros and cons of renting vs. buying a home:
Pros of Renting
Renting an apartment means you’re free of any ownership responsibilities, such as building maintenance, upgrades, and fixing structural issues. You also don’t need to pay for small replacement items like smoke detector batteries, air filters, and light bulbs – unless you prefer to. Renters are much more likely to have a set of fixed expenditures a month, and don’t have to worry as much about emergency home repairs or hikes in property tax. There is one more distinct advantage to renting: amenities. From pools to tennis courts to walking trails and playgrounds, apartment communities offer a variety of unique amenities to attract prospective renters!
Cons of Renting
Renting is great, but it does have its woes, too. Tenants are obliged to abide by community rules set by the owner, landlord, or property manager. These rules can be pertaining to pets or the amount of time a guest is allowed to stay in the unit. Less space generally means less storage, so you might need to pay more for a storage unit or detached garage. Rental rates can, and will, fluctuate over time. Tenants have no control over this and may need to move if rent spikes above their spending cap.
Pros of Buying
A home or apartment can subsequently increase in value, which means you can gain more back if you decide to put it on the market. Because homeowners have to have good credit in order to take out a loan, their credit ratings are typically better. There are no ups and downs in your payment if you take out a fixed-rate mortgage; it will remain constant through the life of the loan. Worried about the interest paid on the home or apartment? Don’t be, interest can be eligible for tax deductions. You may find a purchased home to have more space than one that’s rented, unless it’s a rental being leased out by a homeowner and not a property management company. When you buy a home, you are free to do what you like with the interiors. Don’t like the cabinets? Replace them. Tired of carpeting? Add value to your place by installing hardwood floors.
Cons of Buying
While owning a home, homeowners will have to fix everything themselves, and keep up with mortgage payments, HOA fees, property taxes, insurance, and repairs. It’s a lot to take on, but not impossible. A larger space might mean more cleaning. It’s up to the homeowner to make sure everything in the place is up to code and working properly. Ready to pack up and move? You’ll have to find a realtor to sell the home, or sell it yourself.
At the end of the day, the decision will come down to what works best for you and the family. Renting offers great flexibility and mobility in the event of an unexpected life changing event, while homeownership offers a chance to put down roots and invest! There are pros and cons on either side of the equation, but it’s up to you to choose! Apartments.com wishes you the very best of luck on making your decision!
Read more property rental tips and advice:
- Apartments vs. Condo: What's the Difference?
- Top 10 Reasons to Rent
- Why Millennials Love Apartment Living
- The Rise of the Long-Term Renter