When Renting was a Better Option

When Tim and I decided we'd like to buy a home a couple years ago, we started the search in Brooklyn and quickly discovered that we were priced out. Of course, my parents wanted us to move close-by to them (see: on their block) but it is next to impossible with our budget and wish list.

Our wish list included: a big, or at least decent-sized, backyard; a kitchen island; maybe a fireplace; a garage; 3+ bedrooms; and 2+ bathrooms. Plus, we didn't really want to have to do much work to the house. In Brooklyn, that'll cost you at least $1 million ... We looked (very little) in Long Island on our own to no avail.

Therefore, we had to make the decision: do we settle for a co-op (I say settle because it wouldn't have much of anything on our wish list) or do we move out of the city?

Well, we did not think a coop was our best option at the moment. We had dreams of a house and did not want to let that dream go for the near future. (If we bought a coop, we imagined we'd live in it for a few years or more...) I also did not want to keep looking in Long Island because at the time, it felt too far and overwhelming as I was imagining how much life was going to change with a baby.

We ultimately decided to halt our search and shifted our priorities from owning a home to getting ready to welcome our first baby, S. We decided, for various reasons, that renting was the best option for us at the moment.

Here's why renting could be your best option, too:

  1. No down payment or closing costs needed
  2. Not as big a commitment as home ownership
  3. It might allow you to save, if even just a little
  4. Less time consuming (and stressful) than house hunting
  5. Rent might cost less than mortgage payments

If you, too, are struggling with making the decision about whether to rent or buy, take a good look at your bank account and figure out when the right time to buy a home will be. It's not a decision to rush into and you want to be sure to love the home you buy, so if you need to stall time a bit and rent, don't feel badly! You're far from alone... In NYC, 51% of housing units are rentals vs. 41% owned.

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