Recently released statistics from insurance companies and real estate groups report that more than 44 million American households rent, rather than own, their home. There are a variety of reasons for renting rather than owning a home, and it is a decision that each family and individual must consider and make for themselves.
Renting vs. Owning
As with most choices, there are pros and cons to both homeownership and renting a home. In general, homeownership provides a vehicle for building equity, having set payments that stay the same for the duration of your mortgage. There are also tax benefits for homeowners, and mortgage payments are usually cheaper than rental payments for comparable homes.
Renting a home is often a more logical choice if you only plan to be in an area for a short amount of time. You also avoid paying property taxes and major repair costs and generally have more flexibility should you decide to relocate – you don’t have to wait around for the house to sell.
When we met Landon, flexibility was a primary concern.
Landon is a 22-year-old Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV) who has accepted a position as a temporary project assistant in Washington, DC. The position is scheduled to last for three months but could possibly be extended an additional three to six months. At the end of the temporary position, Landon hopes to be hired for a longer-term position in North Africa.
Landon’s father was born in Lebanon and moved to the United States when he was a child. He insisted that Landon and his siblings grow up speaking fluently not just in English but in Arabic and French as well so they could communicate easily and clearly with extended family members still living in the Middle East. His fluency in these three languages is a big part of the reason Landon was hired for this temporary project assistant position. It is also why he was previously assigned to serve as a young Peace Corps Volunteer in North Africa not long after he graduated from high school, and why he can realistically expect to make the short-list for the more permanent position within the next 9 – 12 months.
Landon was finding it hard to find an apartment that he could rent for his stay in the Washington, D.C. area for his new short-term position. Most apartments required a minimum one-year lease, and Landon couldn’t even guarantee 6 months. He extended his search into surrounding areas and settled on Hyattsville, Maryland. This area had public transportation options that would take him directly into D.C. and would only take a little over an hour to get there. Considering commuter traffic volume on the freeways, he would actually spend less time in transit if he didn’t drive himself.
He then had to make a decision between renting an apartment and renting a small home. Although apartment prices tended to be less than rental houses, Landon had a good reason for looking outside of the apartment market. He needed space and permission to plant a small garden. In preparation for the long-term position in North Africa that Landon hoped to achieve, he wanted to practice his gardening and food preservation skills. As a Peace Corps Volunteer, he had helped establish gardens in remote areas and helped teach communities about safe preparation and preservation of food, and he wanted to refresh his knowledge in those areas during his off-hours.
As he searched online for short-term home rental options, Landon came across our Akin Developers website and contacted us about our ready-to-rent program. He scheduled an appointment to meet with us to discuss things further.
About Akin Developers
Our mission at Akin Developers is to rejuvenate neighborhoods and to help increase the standard of living by improving the overall quality of housing for the residents. We buy houses from individuals in just about any situation including foreclosure, behind on mortgage payments, or just need cash fast.
Some of the homes we purchase we then renovate and sell. Others, like the ones Landon saw on our webpage, we renovate and then keep as ready-to-rent homes.
Finding Brandon’s Rental Home
When Landon contacted us, we had just completed renovations on a small house in Hyattsville that had a small fenced backyard. He did a virtual walkthrough of the house after our first telephone conversation and told us it would fit his needs perfectly. He had even prepared a proposal for us in regard to a garden.
Having seen the lovely yard at the house in the online pictures, he respectfully did not want to damage the grass with a traditional tilled garden. Instead, he showed us photos of a raised garden design that would do minimal, if any, damage to the grass in the backyard, but would still allow him to grow a garden and work on refreshing those skills.
We also discussed the short-term, and uncertain length of his rental and we were able to develop a contract that met the needs of all parties involved.
For those individuals and families who want or need the benefits of a house versus those of an apartment, a ready-to-rent program like the one at Akin Developers may be the perfect solution. If you are considering this option, or just want to hear more about our ready-to-rent program, contact us for a free consultation.