Owning vs Renting

I blogged earlier about how we still haven’t managed to find a school place for Sam. I mentioned briefly that my hubby being self employed means it’s hard to get a mortgage, so moving isn’t really an option yet. Writing that post got me thinking. Is it better to own your home or rent one?

We own our home, and while it’s nice knowing we won’t be turfed out by our landlord; and being able to change parts of the house / decor / fittings which aren’t to our taste, it does come with a few flaws as well.

Being financially responsible for all of the property maintenance and upkeep saps a lot of your “rainy day” money. When the boiler breaks, you can’t just phone your landlord. When your oven stops working on Boxing Day, it’s down to you to find the money for repairs or a replacement. (True Story)!

If we rewind back to 2008, hubby (or “other half” as he was then) and I had been together for less than a year. He already owned his own home, and I moved in. Later that year, we set about trying to find the perfect home together. We found it, but the deal fell through so we decided just to renovate our existing house and stay put.

At that time, hubby’s business was doing amazingly well. I worked for him too, and we were financially secure. He spent a fortune turning our home into the most un-child friendly house imaginable! (Don’t believe me…? Watch this video he made shortly after the refurb and see for yourself)!

I want to add that our house no longer looks like this! The Cinema is now a playroom, the reading room is now Sam’s bedroom, the office has been fitted and the Lodge is now a playhouse for the kids! 

Hubby loves knowing that owning our own home will provide a bit of financial security in our senior years, and possibly allow us to leave some inheritance behind for the kids. What do you think? Is being on the property ladder really all it’s cracked up to be?! Personally, knowing how many of my relatives have had to sell up to cover their nursing home fees in their twilight years makes me a bit less optimistic about the inheritance thing! 

In terms of renting: I have to start by saying I have never rented, so I am probably being really naive here. The main thing which draws me to renting at the moment is knowing we could leave Salford and move to somewhere with a decent school place for Sam. Hubby says the constant stress of knowing we could be turfed out with just 2 months notice would be a nightmare, as would trying to find a landlord who was sympathetic to Sam’s needs. The BBC reported recently that getting on the property ladder is the impossible dream for most people. With that in mind, maybe I need to accept that while we are stuck in a house which isn’t really working for us as a family, perhaps we need to make the best of it, and keep ourselves on the ladder.

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