I owned a home two years ago.
I bought my house by myself and was quite proud of having done that in my early 30’s. However, I chose to return to renting when the complex I lived in got increasingly more sideways — partying and drug-using neighbours I had to share walls with, and a poorly run strata that was hoarding funds and not addressing legitimate problems.
My stress was through the roof. It was definitely time to go back to renting.
I needed to find good landlords who would handle any maintenance or people issues as they came up, and got pretty lucky: I found a pet-friendly unit for me and Gritticus in a nice neighborhood. I certainly can’t afford to ever buy in this area unless the Lotto magically comes through, so it was a treat to have this experience.
There will always be the naysayers of renting with the “you’re throwing your money away by paying someone else’s mortgage.” This isn’t totally untrue. But those with mortgages aren’t always looking at their own financial circumstances as deeply as they should, nor consider all the reasons why one chooses to rent.
Adulting can be rough. But we can’t escape it.
We have to, as responsible adults, ask ourselves tricky questions. When it comes to housing, can you comfortably afford where you live, or are you living cheque to cheque? This goes for overpriced rent and a high mortgage, FYI. If you are in the homeowner group, can you cover emergency bills, like essential renovations? As a renter, should you give up your private laundry or place with a dishwasher, by setting your ego aside to save money?
If you have little to no savings you could be denying and ignoring your physical and mental health for essential breaks just because of these bills and the lifestyle you think you require. What we TRULY require is for more than just utilities and such, guys!
You have to do things that make your soul sing.
For me, that’s taking a vacation away at least once a year, and regular date nights with my fella. For you, maybe it’s a treat of getting that pricier-than-I’d-usually-buy outfit, or a season pass at the ski hill.
Are you reflecting? I hope so. I have done a lot of that lately and in fact moved again since I started drafting this article a couple months ago. Not yet a homeowner for a second time, but it’s in the works. Maybe. But I’m saving and downsized yet again (the rest is in a storage unit. I’m not ready to go full nomad and get rid of everything), and it’s not awful. I have so many supportive loved ones that are helping make this happen.
And if I buy in 2019 as I’ve tentatively planned to do, you can come to my housewarming. Or warm my landlord’s place that I affordably pay rent to. Who knows what is in store at this point!
Because no shame, friends. Know your way. Don’t put on appearances for yourself or anyone else. You’ll be so much happier for it!