The American Dream, but not mine…

I realize that it’s supposed to be the “American Dream” to own your own home. I get it, but I don’t. I’m asked once in a while why I still rent after living here for so long. Part of it is that I never planned on staying, part of it is that I don’t like feeling “tied down”, and part of it is that when something goes wrong, it’s not my job to fix it.  (There’s more that goes into it, but those are the three biggest reasons.)

Even though I’ve met someone who I want to build a future and have a family with, I don’t know that I want to own a house still. In my area, there are basically two scenarios when buying a house: you can afford the house, but the taxes are ridiculous, or you can’t afford the house, but the taxes are manageable.  Between that and neighborhood associations and lawn upkeep rules and more, I’m not sure I really want to ever buy a house.

And then there’s the question of just what I would like. I don’t want to raise my kids in a huge house, but I don’t want a tiny on either. Yeah, I know, I’m picky about it. Just easier to rent…see?

There is a property that I would like to own though, my grandparent’s summer camp and my boyfriend and I have talked about doing so as a get away place. The problem is that if we did that, we couldn’t buy a house (most likely).

So I was thinking about it and doing some research. I noticed that some people are actually renting their “full-time” place – upsizing and downsizing as needed, but then buying a get away place.

Hmmm. That is something to consider…renting an apartment or house to suit our needs at the time, but buying a place to escape to when we wanted to get out of town.

What do you think? Would you consider renting your “full-time” place and buying a get away?



15 Responses to “The American Dream, but not mine…”

  1. Stew Says:

    I’m with you on renting vs owning.

    I don’t plan on buying property outside of somewhere that I would like to live. Near where I work is not where I would like to live, so I see renting for the foreseeable future. I also only need three fingers to count the times I have mowed a lawn, and I would like to keep it that way.

    • cuteellaisbold Says:

      Good point about living v. working too. Right now, I’d rather live closer to my job, but I don’t mind either.

      Side note: mowing the lawn can be fun! Lawn tractor and all that jazz…

  2. GenWar Says:

    There are plenty of upsides to owning a home:

    1. Cleaning the Gutters
    2. Mowing your own lawn/shovelling your own snow/raking your own leaves
    3. Paying twice as much monthly but knowing that 50% of your doubled rent payment is taxes and insurance and not actually going towards your home.
    4. Delightful repair people…Plumbers, HVAC Guys, Water Heater Replacement guys, Flood clean up guys, Cable Guys.
    5. Home Repairs: Paving the Driveway, replacing the roof, replacing the siding, painting the outside, painting the inside replacing the deck, replacing the pool filter/lining.

    I have to get back to work but I’d keep going…I mean, seriously, the benefits are endless…why on Earth would you NOT want to own a home?

  3. FB @ Says:

    I think that’s a better idea than just buying a house.. although it does sound counter intuitive, it makes a lot of sense.

    You can move around your own home life to different cities, but your getaway will always be the same place 🙂

    In that respect, it makes sense.

    Personally, no properties for me. I don’t like being tied down.

  4. Frank Says:

    “Would you consider renting your “full-time” place and buying a get away?”


  5. Rochelle Says:

    I used to be pro-renting, but I like the idea of owning my place and being able to do whatever I want with it. Plus, it’s hard to find a place that likes cats and big dogs.

    • cuteellaisbold Says:

      Those are valid points for consideration! I’ve been lucky so far that my landlords haven’t cared if I wanted to paint something a different color as long as I was willing to paint it back if they didn’t like it.

  6. Bill Says:

    I would caution on renting out to anyone unless you’re serious about adding Landlord to your resume. Owning rental property is a full time job. Unless you write it into the lease, you are responsible for all upkeep. And if you write it into the lease yet your renters don’t comply, you’re still responsible for all upkeep, especially in neighborhoods with beautification ordinances. My uncle and aunt tried the rental route for years and eventually abandoned the dream after countless hours and funds were continually sucked down the landlord hole. You need to be willing to gamble on the risk of getting a bad tenant, and getting rid of them can sometimes be a nightmare. Honestly, I’d say live within your means and don’t jump into anything you’re not willing to commit to 100%.

    • cuteellaisbold Says:

      Hi Bill, Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. I think there was a misunderstanding because although I’ve considered buying a rental property in the past – living in part and renting part, it wasn’t mentioned in this post because it’s not on my radar currently. This post was about BEING a renter and then buying a get away place…

  7. Sue Says:

    Be careful with this – in certain economies, it’s better to rent. Real estate isn’t always a good investment.

    By the way, I’m a homeowner. There’s very little I enjoy about it, other than the pride of being able to say I do it on my own. Which is usually said as I’m scraping the bottom of my purse for spare change since the home sucks the life out of my paycheck. 🙂

  8. Dri Says:

    I am totally with you on preferring renting to buying. Chasetopher and I have been living together for almost 3 years now and we haven’t once considered buying a home. Mostly because of the whole being tied down thing. We aren’t in love with our jobs and haven’t decided if we are in love with this area yet and until one or both of those things happen buying a house seems like too big a step. Plus with all the problems we had at our last place (mice [in the ceiling!], water pumps breaking, mold in the walls, broken fridge, poor ventilation…etc) it was nice to be able to say cya! when our lease was up and move into something new. When you own a home those problems become YOUR problems and there is no walking away. Now we live in a nice, well kept building with gardens that are tended and parking lots that are kept clean/shoveled and a host of other things that we don’t have to do because the building maintenance does it for us and it’s so nice.

    Maybe we will buy a house someday because there is that longing for a yard, a garage, a lawn and babies but it will have to be the perfect house at the perfect time. Until then renting suits us just fine.

    • cuteellaisbold Says:

      Those are important things to consider! And although I love my place now, for two of us to live there will be tough…I wouldn’t be able to stay there with kids most likely. Plus, the problems aren’t mine to deal with, it’s my landlord’s job and if she doesn’t, well shit hits the fan 🙂

      I think you also hit the nail on the head. The right house at the right time – if ever!

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