A house or an apartment? What you need to know first before choosing a place to stay

Home Sweet Home: Choosing a place to stay

They say humans have three basic needs: food, clothing, and shelter. Food and clothing—they cost minimal, but shelter, that’s another story.

Of course, we all dream of buying and owning our own house where we would get settled till the rest of our lives. But granted that we weren’t born with millions in our bank account, that dream house would have to wait. Our options: rent, rent-to-own, or loan.

Chose to rent first

For a lot of people this is the first and most common option. Why? First is mobility. If your work demands you to be relocated often, then renting is the most practical option of the three. Also, if you plan to migrate abroad soon, then owning a house would prove useless. Moreover, renting will you give enough time to look for the “best” location, size, and price of the dream house you want. Renting is also to be considered when you are still single or still starting with your family, you don’t want to rush buying a house you won’t be able to maintain later on if financial crisis arises. Also, think about your income. Is it just enough to cover your rent, food, city services, etc.? Or is there still some left to save?

Invest for the future

If you think you are ready to get settled, then go for houses or units that are rent-to-own. This is a better idea if you have a family already or are contented with where you are. At least, you can sleep well knowing that after years of paying that house will be yours. But before choosing this option, think well of the long-time result. First, the state of the house after the lease. You might need to renovate or fix the house, which means more expense. Also, calculate whether the price of renting till you own it will be equivalent and worth-it if you would rather buy a new house. Lastly, paperwork. Just like buying a new house, be prepared for the paperwork. Secure the title, and change it from commercial to residential.

Living the dream

Buying a house needs a lot of decision-making. Even if you have the money, don’t rush buying a house you would regret after. Weigh your options first. Will you be staying in one place for most of your life? Then go ahead, as long as your job and your family will stay with you. Consider also all the expenses needed. Just because the advertisement says it’s 5 million then that’s it. Allot separate funds for taxes, paper work fees, and other dues. Think also about the size of your family and the house available for you to buy. If you’re planning to get a loan or pay for the house in installments, make sure you have enough income. Aside from that, determine whether the house would cost way more if you get a loan or pay in installments rather than buying it hands down. Buying a house means it is yours forever, and you get to do whatever with it. No danger of being driven out by your landlord.

Have decided already? Remember, a house is where you will build your home. Decide wisely.

Note: I wrote this article for a client in 199jobs.com.

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