The media and older generations can try to convince you that you shouldn’t be a renter, and that owning a home is a better idea. Regardless of what side of the renter vs. homeowner debate you’re on, there are still great reasons to consider renting an apartment. I still remember moving into my very first apartment: I had no idea how to use my fancy electronic key, but once I was inside, I was excited beyond belief. There was so much potential in all that space, from decorating to cooking to drinking beer and eating pizza with my roommates.
It was an unparalleled sense of freedom– we were totally in charge of our lives, and we were free to stay or go as soon as our lease was up — or sooner after we finally figured out how to break a lease. Five years later, and I still feel exactly the same way when I move into a new place (except I’m way better with keys now).
My apartments have always been a personal sanctuary for me, whether I live with three friends or all my by myself. I love being a renter so much, in fact, that I made an entire list about it. Check it out:
1. You Can Break Up With Your Apartment At Any Time
Truth be told, we’re always growing and changing as people, whether we’re 18 or 34. The apartment (and neighborhood) that suited you at age 23 might not be best for you when you’re 29 (or even 24), so why commit yourself to one location? That’s one of the best things about being a renter– you get to move each and every time your lease runs out and try something totally new.
2. You Never Have to Mow the Lawn
This is my single favorite thing about being a renter. To me, yard work is the most tedious chore of all time, and I know absolutely nothing about leaf blowers or planting petunias. Luckily, apartment complexes take care of the yardwork for you. So next time you’re curled up in bed watching “Broad City” reruns on Hulu Plus and eating pizza, just remember this: Some poor soul is probably raking his front yard down the block.
3. Your Monthly Utility Bills Don’t Make You Want to Cry
Apartments typically have less square footage than houses or condos, meaning there’s less space you need to heat, cool, and light. Between the three, you’ll have relatively affordable bills each month– and who actually uses a dining room, anyway?
4. You Don’t Have to Buy As Many Sofas
There are a few other perks associated with smaller-space living: You don’t need nearly as much furniture. This is great for your budget– and your back when moving day rolls around.
5. Your Parents Will Probably Stay in a Hotel When They Visit
We all love our parents, but let’s face it: There’s something a little uncomfortable about them poking around all our stuff when we’re adults. When you have a smaller space (and a good location), they’ll probably stay down the block in a hotel.
6. Someone Else Will Fix Your Running Toilet
How knowledgeable are you about plumbing? How about furnaces, mold, broken doors, shattered windows, or creaking floorboards? If you answered “not that knowledgeable,” then relying on your own handyman skills probably isn’t in the cards for you. The good news about renting? You’ll never have to.
7. You Won’t Sink Into Debt
Renting an apartment sometimes requires a security deposit, but other than that, there are no up front costs (like down payments) associated with snagging a new place. You pay your rent out of pocket each month, requiring no mortgages and no debt. (The exception to this is for students who are using loans to pay rent and tuition. In that case, you guys keep doing you.)
8. You Can Keep Your Options Open
There’s one interesting thing about renting that I only recently noticed: There are many awesome neighborhoods I can afford to rent in, but I’d never be able to afford owning property. It isn’t always the case, but renting can make great areas of any city accessible, as rent ranges widely pretty much everywhere.
9. One Word: Amenities
From gyms, to community centers, to snack bars, many buildings have amenities that make life incredibly convenient. Building security, doormen, on-site maintenance, and tenant parties are just a few of the things you might find when you’re a renter.
And maybe best of all? Some places have community pools. Now that’s what I’m talkin’ about.
10. You Live in the Best Locations Ever
Most apartments are in prime locations— something we can’t always say about homes. Take my apartment, for example. It’s located directly next to the train, the bus, a Marshall’s, a DSW, two Chipotles, three Thai restaurants, one nail salon, my hair salon, my dentist, my primary care physician, Dominos, Walgreens, and three of my favorite bars. I could viably stay within 100 yards of my apartment and lead a very satisfying life.
And needless to say, it makes getting to brunch on Sunday mornings way easier.
11. You Make So Many New Friends
The community atmosphere of apartment complexes can be such an amazing way to meet new friends– especially if your building hosts mixers or game nights of any kind. You’ll have dozens of neighbors on your floor alone. So much potential!
12. Long Live Wine Night
13. You Can Make It Rain on Your 401K
Not having a down payment and a mortgage means you’ll be able to invest that extra cash elsewhere. Why not your 401K or a travel savings account set aside for satisfying your wanderlust.
14. You Only Need One U-Haul
OK, maybe two. The point here is that renters typically own less stuff and have a much easier time moving around.
15. It’s an Adventure
If I could sum up being a renter with two words, I’d say this: Renting is all about taking advantage of the freedom adulthood grants you and fun you can have with it. I don’t know about you, but that sounds like the recipe to a fulfilling life for me.
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