Apartment Locator: Buying a Cheap Condo is Way Better Than Renting!
Buying a condo is a big step. If you have been a “renter” for most of your adult life, owning your own place may still sound a little out of your league.
Even though entering a life of home ownership has a reputation for being less than fun when it comes to finances, there are numerous benefits to buying a condo.
Before you renew the lease to your apartment, consider buying an affordable condo.
Owning Ends Up Being Cheaper
It may not seem like it in the beginning, but buying a condo ends up being less expensive than renting an apartment.
It all, of course, depends on the cost of the condo and the amount of rent you currently pay.
For instance, let’s say you are looking for an affordable condo with the price tag of around $200,000.
If you are paying $1,000 a month to rent an apartment, the cost is hard to beat (depending on where you live).
Using this handy calculating tool, you can get an estimate as to when you can expect buying to be a better payoff than renting.
In some cases, owning becomes cheaper than renting in as little as five years.
But consider this. If you are renting, someone owns that place and likely holds a mortgage (like you would if you owned). They are not losing money renting to you, so it's likely that in most circumstances you're paying more than the total of condo fees, mortgage, and taxes.
You are Investing in Yourself
The main reason that owning ends up being cheaper than renting is due to the appreciation of property value.
When you rent from a landlord, you are helping him or her build equity on his or her property (your apartment), but when you own, you are investing in your own property.
Buyers Have More Freedom
When you rent an apartment you sign a contract that states a lot of things you can’t do in or with the rental.
Maybe you have to pay hundreds a month extra for a dog (if even allowed) or you can’t hang up pictures on the wall.
Although the Homeowners Association (HOA) act as kind of the landlords of a condo, as they set the rules and guidelines, condo owners have more freedom when it comes to decor and other aspects.
Another nice thing about being a part of HOA is that there is no “gray’’ area.
If you live in a regular neighborhood, there are no rules for neighbors to follow.
In a condo, you may not love your neighbors, but at least you know that everyone is expected to follow a set of guidelines.
You May Be Able to Rent Out Your Condo
Many prospective condo owners are hesitant to own because they want to travel or have an opportunity to live abroad for a while.
It all depends on HOAs rules, but sometimes you can rent out your condo while you live elsewhere.
In many ways, this beats finding a sub-lease, and you can still make your mortgage payments.
Enjoy Some Perks of Apartment Living
Apartment living can be great, but it doesn't compare to the amenities available in some of the newer condo buildings.
Consider that many new condo buildings have urban chalets, indoor and outdoor pools, saunas, wine cellars, and even rooftop terraces.
Although home ownership means “you’re on your own” when it comes to repairs and the like, some condos include maintenance in the monthly fees.
Finally, A Place to Call Home
Even a nice and well-maintained apartment can feel unlivable at times. Buying a brand new condo is like purchasing a house, but it’s usually a lot less work.
Although many people consider condos to be “fancy apartments,” it’s easy to customize them to suit all your wants and needs.
Rather than living from one apartment to the next, every couple of years, you are investing in a place that you can be proud to call home.
Owning a condo has a lot of perks, but before you dive in and buy the first one you see make sure you weigh out all of your options and do your math.
A carefully thought out purchase will be cheaper and well worth it in the end.