Home Owner or Renter

When making a decision on whether you should rent or buy a home, there are certain factors that must be considered, such as how long you need to live in your home, the cost of the mortgage (fees, interest rates, etc), how much you have saved to take care of the down payment, closing costs, emergency repairs in a home, etc.

A home owner and renter both have their own advantages and disadvantages


NO MAINTENANCE OR REPAIR COSTS. When you rent a home or apartment, you don’t have to worry about paying for any maintenance or emergency repairs. The landlord is always responsible for this. Your only obligation is the rent and utilities. You don’t have to keep money on the side to pay for any eventualities.

EASY TO RELOCATE. As a renter, you can move anywhere you want, at the end of your lease term. This is not the case with home ownership. While a home owner can also decide to sell and relocate, the house could usually take longer on the market, thus limiting the ability to move when one wants to.

GOOD FOR SHORT-TERM LIVING. If you plan in staying in an area for a shorter period of time, say five years, renting provides a better option. Typically, there is no benefit out of a house if it is sold within the first five years. In this case, it is best to rent than buy your own.

NO PROPERTY TAXES. As a renter, you don’t pay any property taxes.


Zero investment. With renting, all your money is going to the landlord. But when you own a home, you are building equity in the house and thus an investment in the long run.

Inability to customize your house or apartment. When you rent, there are certain things you cannot do to the rented unit. For instance, you cannot change the design of the walls, windows, etc.


INVESTMENT/EQUITY. Buying a home is considered an investment because part of the money you pay in mortgage helps build equity. After so many years, even if you chose to sell, you would have some money out of the house. And if you keep it till you pay off, then you have your own property and you will never have to worry about renting anymore.

ABILITY TO CUSTOMIZE. It is your home and you own it, hence you can do whatever you want with it. You can break down certain walls, ceiling, fixtures, etc and customize them to your liking. This is not possible with renting.

SPACE. Those who own homes have a bigger advantage over renters, in terms of space. If you rent an apartment, you are paying almost as much as the cost of a mortgage, yet you are getting less space than living in a home. And even when you live in a home, you will usually pay more money in rent than what the owner pays in mortgage, implying that, with your rental payment, you could have gotten more space for the value of what you pay.


MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR COSTS. Contrary to renting, a home owner takes care of his/her own repair and maintenance. This requires that you have enough money saved for emergency breakdowns and repairs, lawn care, etc. In the long run, they can add up to a substantial amount. This can be stressful sometimes, especially in difficult economic times.

PROPERTY TAXES. A home is subject to property taxes, which add to the total cost of the home.

DIFFICULT TO RELOCATE. When you own a home, you don’t have as much flexibility as a renter when it comes to relocating. You will usually be more tied to your home until you are able to sell it.

DOWN PAYMENT AND CLOSING COSTS. Buying a home in most cases requires a down payment and closing costs, so you have to save a good amount of money before considering buying a home. As for a renter, you don’t have to think about such costs.

A decision should therefore be made and both sides should be carefully weighed before making the final choice on renting or buying a home.