Living in an apartment is a solid life choice — renting might be more expensive than paying a mortgage each month, but that’s only one tiny part of the total picture. Here’s why we find that having a rental in the urban core is a great decision:
It Costs Less
Sure, right now if you can manage to get a mortgage at all, it will probably cost less per month than your rent. But a mortgage doesn’t over your water, sewer, garbage, or any insurance costs. Add those back in, and before you even take any maintenance and repair costs into account, you’re already saving money.
Speaking of Maintenance
You don’t realize just how much maintenance a house requires unless you’ve lived in one you have to take care of all by yourself. Shoveling snow, mowing grass, vacuuming out your refrigerator coils (yes, you do), degreasing the filter on your oven hood — the list of chores is actually endless, and an apartment will take care of a large part of it.
It’s hard to beat the amenities of even a modest apartment complex. It’s a matter of economics. Sure, you could fill a house with a washer and dryer, a home gym, and a hot tub — but how much is that going to cost? But when the apartment can maintain community resources, they cost very little per person and are almost always there for you when you need them.
Not only do apartment complexes downtown have security at the front door and near the elevator (and stairs), but apartments in general are more secure than homes. There’s always neighbors nearby, and in general apartments are less likely to have valuables to steal — so they’re less likely to be targeted than a home.
When you buy a house, you’d better be prepared to live at that location for a very long time if you plan to make it worth your while. There’s nothing like signing up for a 30 year mortgage knowing that you have to leave in four years — far better to find a place that gives you everything you need and that you can walk away from when you need to.
When you’re saving money every month because you don’t have to worry about utilities and maintenance, and you’re saving time every month because you don’t have to shovel snow or mow grass, guess what? You have time and money to pursue your own interests instead of spending it keeping what you have in a usable state. That’s worth a lot.
It’s hard to beat the amenities of an urban core. Most of the things you need for daily life are within walking distance — and those special things you might only need once a month are entirely within a short bus ride. You can find thousands of homes in any city that are miles from the nearest commercial area — but when you’re downtown, the commercial area isn’t just ‘over there’ — it’s ‘already here.’
Renting is a great option for anyone who wants a place to live that will offer them the things they need, the options they want, and the playtime they deserve.