Whether you are a young person searching for your first home or a seasoned homeowner looking for a change, the question invariably arises: Is it better to rent or to buy? The choice is not always clear, thanks to myriad factors, and more and more people are choosing to rent. When you explore the various benefits of apartment rental, it’s easy to understand why this option is becoming so popular.
Statistics show that urbanization is becoming more popular every year, with thousands of people choosing the option to live close to work, shopping, and recreation rather than living in spread-out suburbs that require a car (and the maintenance costs associated with owning a vehicle). Unfortunately, buying real estate in most urban areas can be a tough hurdle – desirable city neighborhoods often come with a hefty price tag. Apartment communities can leverage that cost and offer affordable apartment rent that makes it possible for more people to enjoy desirable urban areas without devoting a massive portion of their income to buying and maintaining a home.
In order to buy a home in the current market, buyers need to come to the bargaining table with 10-20% of the total value of the home they intend to purchase. This can be a sizeable amount of cash for an average home in a good neighborhood, making it especially difficult for first-time homebuyers to begin shopping with confidence. As a result, many homebuyers end up settling for a home or a neighborhood that is not ideal in order to make the initial investment. On the contrary, apartment renters are usually only asked to supply a security deposit and 2 months of rent, making it much easier to find an apartment that suits their lifestyle at a more obtainable initial cost.
Many first-time buyers forget to account for the cost of caring for a home. Routine maintenance costs can be considerable – gutter cleaning, lawn care, and leaf removal, trash disposal, septic system service, property taxes, and driveway upkeep can add considerable expenses to an already demanding mortgage payment. In addition to these routine expenses, homeowners must also be prepared for necessary repairs or possibly the need to replace appliances. Not only must a homeowner cover the costs of unexpected repairs, but they must also shop for contractors and trustworthy maintenance providers, a task often fraught with potential pitfalls including fraud or shoddy work. A responsible apartment community shares the concerns of its residents, and provides necessary care and maintenance, allowing renters to feel at ease and secure, free of such difficult worries.
Buying a home is a long, tedious process. In order to move in, buyers must wait for inspections to be completed, and often there are fees and extra steps that can make the process both costly and long-winded. Furthermore, previous owners are not held to any particular standard in order to make a home “move-in ready”, leaving the new owner to clean, paint, and often repair the home before or during the moving process. The beauty of an apartment community is the ability to leave all of these burdens on the shoulders of the community management, allowing you to move in hassle-free to an apartment that has been professionally cleaned, freshly painted, and fully repaired.
In a world that currently encourages life experience, travel, and education, homeownership can be a limiting burden. Homeowners can’t travel without finding someone to house sit and take care of emergencies or yard maintenance while they are gone. Moving to take a new job or pursue an educational opportunity includes the daunting task of making your home market-ready and finding a buyer. Should a family member need short- or long-term support, homeowners are required to either bring the family member into the home or sell their home in order to be close enough to meet those needs. Renting an apartment allows you to travel easily, knowing that maintenance will continue in your absence, or even to move quickly without having to find a buyer to purchase your home before you can look for a new place of residence.
In addition to the conveniences of location and worry-free maintenance, apartment rental can enhance your lifestyle in ways that might be impossible for a homeowner to provide for themselves without considerable cost or extra travel. Forget the gym membership – many modern apartment communities include fitness rooms with state-of-the-art equipment. You can also take advantage of community movie theaters, swimming pools, playgrounds, walking trails, dog parks, mini cafes, and so much more, all included in your apartment rent.
Buying a home is a major commitment, and often one that comes with more disadvantages and costs than renting an apartment. The right apartment community can provide freedom, manageable costs, and the opportunity to live in a location that is ideal for work and play. Apartment rental may not be the right choice for everyone, but it’s worth taking a tour of an apartment community before you buy. You may find your own piece of paradise.