Is Home Ownership Worth it?

Recently, we had a large storm come through and it took one of the big trees between our neighbor’s house and ours down.  It landed on the power lines and surprisingly enough, we didn’t lose power.  We called the electric company and they came out to assess the damage and decided that they needed to turn our power off because the tree had ripped our electric meters off our houses.  They also told us that we needed to get an electrician in to repair the electric meters.  Sigh. We got the electric meters repaired and called to have the electricity turned back on.  They told us that we had to call the county to have the work inspected.  We called, and then found out that we had to pull electrical permits (more money) to have the inspector come out.

We took care of all that, went and paid for our permits, and are currently waiting for the inspector to come out.  Thankfully, he was kind enough to call the electric company and have our power turned back on so we weren’t without power for many days.  Through this same storm, Mr. Money woke up to a weird noise in our house and realized that the ceiling in our living room was leaking.  He went up into the attic and realized that there were two more leaks on the other side of the house!  Thankfully he went up there because we never would have known.  We had to have a roofer come out and fix the leaks.

In all this, I can’t help but feel like sometimes renting would be a better option instead of homeownership, especially for some people.  When you think of all the mortgage interest you pay, the cost of homeowners insurance, general upkeep, roofing that will need to be replaced, paint, upgrading that needs to be done every 15 years or so, appliances that will eventually have to be replaced, etc., it adds up!  It’s overwhelming to me to think of all the costs that could add up all at one time!

I’m thankful that we live frugally so hopefully when these things need to be done we’ll have the money to do them. In the meantime, we’re just going to live with the things we have and try to save as much as we can for future expenses.  Since all of this happened, I have been very grateful that we have a small emergency fund to cover some of this stuff!

However, on the other hand, I can’t help but think of how easy it would be if we were renting to just call the landlord and they have to take care of all the problems 🙂 I am hoping in 18 or so years when our mortgage is paid off that I’m thankful that we do have a house.  Not having a mortgage payment will be beyond amazing, and I’m sure then we will feel differently about owning versus renting!

What do you think- is homeownership worth it? Would you rather rent or own?

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Getting the Itch to Upgrade

houseLately I’ve had the feeling that I would like to move to a bigger house with more acreage.  Our house is just the perfect size for us right now, but we wish we had a garage and more property.  Not to mention, if we end up expanding our family it would be nice to have an extra bedroom to put our office and guest room in.  We have a three bedroom house right now, and it works because we’ve got the master, Penny’s room, and then the third bedroom is the guest room and office.

I feel conflicted because I am a huge fan of minimalism, I don’t like clutter, and I have always felt like a smaller house is better. Smaller houses cost less in upkeep, property taxes, heating and cooling, etc.  I have to say I kind of hit a plateau with decluttering and I feel like we are doing pretty well with the amount of stuff that we have and bring in.  I do continuously go through things and as Penny outgrows clothing, I keep a lot of the nice stuff but the stuff that’s not my favorite I usually pass on.

Moving would also cost us a lot of money, so that’s something I’m trying to take into consideration as well.  We’d have to pay closing costs, the moving trucks, etc.  If we stayed put, we’d end up saving money because we wouldn’t have all those expenses.

My parents bought their house right after they got married, moved in, and stayed there ever since.  The house was a small “starter home” and they added on as they had kids, but the house isn’t huge and I feel like my mother would have preferred a larger home while she was raising kids.  I know for a fact that she would have liked a bigger kitchen!  She still complains about that to this day.

One of my biggest fears about moving and looking for a new house is that we’d find a house that needed a ton of work, like new floors.  I don’t want to install flooring again!  I don’t mind a house that needs paint because that’s not a huge deal and I actually like painting walls.  I just don’t want a fixer-upper that we’d have to spend a ton of time fixing up.

I guess a good plan of action would be to just stay where we are for right now and see what the future brings.  I’ll still keep looking at the real estate listings to see if there was something we’d HAVE to have, but as of right now it just makes the most sense for us to stay in our current house.  Over the past seven and a half years, we’ve really worked at making this house our home and we’ve done a lot of work to beautify our house and I’m really proud of it!

Do you ever get the itch to upgrade?  Have you lived in your current place for awhile?

 

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What Factors Decide Where You Live?

The other day I realized it’s going to be seven years since we purchased our house.  It is so hard for me to believe, and I’m so proud of how I’ve really helped turn this house into a home.  I’ve painted pretty much every surface in this house; installed new flooring in many of the rooms, and decorated to make it feel like it’s truly our home.  Right now, I’m very happy with our home and I work hard to keep it clean, decluttered, and organized so it’s a place we love to be.  With a two year old, we don’t go out as much as we used to, so it’s nice to have a place to hang out in which we’re comfortable.

About five years ago I couldn’t wait to sell our house and move.  We’ve considered moving to Michigan (where my family is) or Colorado (where Mr. Money’s family is).  My sister ended up moving to our state about a year ago and since she did that, we’ve felt more like this is where we are meant to be right now.  I’m happy with it and so is Mr. Money.  However, if things changed I think we may consider relocating.  Our families are not getting any younger, and it does make me sad that Penny doesn’t get to experience living near most of our family.  It’s hard!

Before we would consider moving, there are plenty of points we’d have to consider.  First and foremost we’d have to find a good paying job with benefits for Mr. Money.  That’s non-negotiable.  Of course we need income to support our family so if he couldn’t find a job there’s no way we’d be able to move.  Since we try to limit our expenses and live frugally, we’d probably be able to make it if his salary was a little less than ideal. Having health insurance is a very nice thing to have, and not something I’d like to go without.

We’d also have to be able to afford a reasonably sized house in a good area, preferably with some land.  I wouldn’t want to give up our house and property that I love to move somewhere else that I didn’t.  I’d also like our new house to have a garage, basement, and wood stove.   Those are probably the three most important things that we’d require if we were going to look for a new house.  Knowing how weird I am about organization, I’d have to use a moving house checklist to ensure everything was completed.

I would love to move somewhere new and interesting- maybe Montana or Utah, but since we don’t have family there it wouldn’t be an option.  I’m very glad that we lived in Steamboat Springs, Colorado for a few years when we were young and child free.  It was a great opportunity and I don’t think we’d ever be able to do that again!  Right now I’m going to continue to make our house a home and do upgrades to our house when we can so we can maximize our profit if we ever do sell!

What factors are most important in deciding where you live? Do you live near your family?

 

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