I remember finishing University, moving back home and thinking of nothing else other than renting a house with my boyfriend. I bugged him for months about it (as he likes to remind me of!) and we picked the first house we saw. Luckily, it turned out ok and we've been in the same place for three years, however, we were recently told our landlord was selling up and we have until the end of August to get out.
That's kind of what has inspired this post as the subject of mortgages versus renting has been popping up a lot recently. Unfortunately we just don't have the money for mortgaging but I thought I'd put a little post together to go through a few pros and cons of renting, in the hope it might help someone who's eager to get into their own place ASAP.
You feel like a real grown up when you finally move out of mum and dad's house!
Having a landlord or letting agency as your back up should anything with the house go wrong
The boilers broke! Who ya gonna call?
No long term commitment
If you need to get out fast, you can. You'll probably have to give a month or two notice but it's much quicker than having to wait for the house to sell.
No pets allowed
Unless you have a rather nice landlord or pay extra deposit (one landlord wanted to charge us £1,000 extra for ours!)
No children allowed
Some won't allow your cheeky little cherubs however much you think they're little angels.
If you're renting then the landlord won't be keen for you to paint your place. You might have to stick with heavy accessorising instead.
Regular house visits and checks
Lettings agencies and landlords need to check your property by law to make sure things like smoke alarms are still in working order, this means regular checks every three months or so. A bit inconvenient sometimes. Some even like to check you're keeping the house looking good.
No return on investment
So you're paying all this money per month...but it's paying someone else's mortgage! This is a big factor in our own decision that we do want to finally get a mortgage so we can actually have somewhere that is ours and nobody elses. It physically hurts if you work out the amount of money you've paid in rent, I wouldn't suggest it!
When you're renting, it's not really your home. Like what happened to us, the landlord can decide to sell up at any point or even stop renting and move in themselves. It's someone elses nest egg, which you're just keeping warm temporarily.
While my boyfriend and I are going to continue renting, because we have to, it's not what we want to do forever.
My top tip when you're renting is to save, save, save. Even if you're not saving for a mortgage, it's a good idea to have a little pile of savings incase the worst happens and you need to move out in relatively quick time. That way you won't, like me, have to break into your overdraft or scrabble money together/sell all your worldly posessions in order to get the funds.
What pros and cons have you found from renting? Let me know in the comments.