Home > Why I rent

Why I rent

December 1st, 2006 at 04:50 am

Thanks, guys for your advice. I'm going to tell lawyer friend about it so when I stick his name on the cc:line he won't be surprised. Except for the 70% weirdness, the landlord and the rental are fine. We aren't insane nutball tenants; if we do call, they respond quickly. Best of all the rent hasn't changed any in 5 years.

So why do I rent? Well to tell you the truth in the simplest and least bitter-renter sounding way, financially we can't swing it in any fiscal responsible way right now, circa 2006-2007.

The median price of a house in Seattle/ King County about 400K. As a matter of fact, estimates the price of the place we rent at 370K. DH and I together make 60-65K, and we rent our 2-bedroom digs at 845$/month. Even with the most evil, fiscally suicidal I/O, neg-am, no doc ARM loan at a bogus teaser rate we would still pay about $500/month more than we rent. And a loan like that means that I would still be renting - from the bank instead of a landlord. To afford a 30yr fixed, we would need to at least double, even triple our income.

So we cheap it out, save our money, and wait. After all, a house is like any other purchase - you want to get a better price. No sense being frugal in your choices, save your money, then turn around and overpay in the largest purchase that you'll make in your life.

That's not to say we aren't interested. We're saving our money - house prices can drop, or they can rise even further. Conversely, we can save for a down payment or we will sit on a ton of money and rent. Either way, we sleep well at night.

Well, maybe not DH. His side of the bed has developed a slow leak. (Select Comfort is basically an air mattress with a phd.) At least with air, it is a lot less messy. Because my side is just fine, right now we are swapping out hoses, valves, etc, to narrow down just what is failing on DH's side of the bed. (BTW, take your best shot - I'm going to either delete or treasure your comments.)

Slushy, goopy mess today but a lot less icy. 2 buses on my normal bus route didn't come, so it was plan B - down the hill to the workhorse bus. I was 15 minutes late.

Savings log - $2 tip box (finally deposited this month's scrapings today), 8.04$ coming from this week's T-bill, and payday.
Spending log - $2 coffee/milk + $7 lunch.

4 Responses to “Why I rent”

  1. Carolina Bound Says:

    I feel for you. I actually bought a house before I should have; I was just so desperate to have one. I love being a homeowner, but it is really beyond my means to make the house payment and maintain it as well. And it is a small, modest home. That is a big part of the reason I'm selling in the spring and moving in with my cousin in North Carolina.

    So I guess what I'm saying is, stick to your plan, and get your house when you're ready.

  2. monkeymama Says:

    I feel for you too, living in Cali, BUT keep in mind that you do get a large tax break if you buy a home, you can increase your take home pay. We save about $2k/year on a $200k mortgage. But we are in the lowest tax bracket as a result - so save much more in the end. Just something to keep in mind, you may be ready a little sooner than you think.

    We bought our first home in that salary range & the most we ever felt comfortable with was a $300k home though. But we bought a condo since we could not afford a home. They actually appreciated faster than homes the time we owned. They could be a great investment in a high-cost area. Where we live now we wanted ot invest in a condo as the real estate started to go crazy, but there is little price differential here. You can hardly find a condo cheaper than a house - every market is so different I guess.

    Good luck to future home ownership! Sleeping well sounds pretty nice in the meantime.

  3. kashi Says:

    Thanks for the info! I was just curious. Part of me likes renting, but part of me wants a home. We make about the same as you and your husband, but cheap houses are half the price here! Something to do with the weather, perhaps? Wink

  4. baselle Says:

    carolina bound - I feel for you, too. My thoughts are with you that you have a little bit of equity and can sell with a little bit of profit, or at least not have to bring a check to the closing.

    monkeymama - Thanks for the reminder! Unfortunately the tax break is "baked in" to most home prices, and its possible only if you itemize your deductions. It puts a pinky on the scale, not the whole thumb. Smile And yep, condo prices are behaving the same here as in Cali.

    kashi - might well be something to do with the weather, or due to the mythic Microsoft executive that's gonna love your cute li'l place! Big Grin Wait awhile - you (and frankly any buyer) have time.

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