Today as I was hanging up my laundry, I was thinking back to the days when all my laundry was done in a laundromat. Greg and I rented an apartment several years before buying a house.
Then I started thinking…was it really so horrible to rent?
I think we all get really caught up in this whole American Dream idea. Who started that? How can one possibly say that just because your dream is to have a nice fancy car, live in a high-end neighborhood is the same dream that I have?
My dream is to live without the worry of money. That’s my dream! There will come a day when we will move and get a bigger house, but I don’t care to live in a mansion. I’ve already been promised one of those, so I can wait.
Somewhere along the lines, someone put it in our heads that we have to get married, make babies, buy a house, have (2) car payments, use credit cards, eat out until we feel like we’re going to bust, etc. That’s the real American Dream. It’s no dream at all…it’s a nightmare!
Sorry, I’m chasing rabbits. But this dream is expensive. I don’t think people realize that when you buy a house you’re not just purchasing a home. There are more things that come with the territory that you may have never planned for. We sure didn’t!
RENTING vs. BUYING
When Greg and I were first married, we were bringing home around $50K per year. Let’s think about this for a minute.
Married couple, no kids. Rent would have been our biggest expense. When we started budgeting, we realized that we had 1,000 extra dollars per month. This included rent, groceries, gas, spending money, etc. We didn’t go without any of these things.
If we put that $1,000 into a savings account marked “House Fund” we could have had $12,000 over the span of 1 year (not counting interest).
Think about if we saved for 5 years. We could have dumped that money into a money market (our bank asks for $2,500 down) which might have helped a little with the compound interest.
In 5 years we would have had at least $60,000 to apply towards a home. This would not have paid for our home fully, but it would have been 2/3 of the total payment.
Also, I had my summer’s off as a teacher. If I had been really smart, I could have used this time to get a small part-time job during the summer to help save for a house which would have made the process go even faster.
So, is renting really all that bad? Will you consider staying a renter after reading this post?