Buying a home—the wrong home, at the wrong time—can wreak havoc in your life. As many buyers know, you can lose money and drive yourself nuts with stress even when you’re not in the middle of a housing market crash. That’s why in a newly emerging version of the American Dream, a lot of people (men especially) are most content renting.
From the NY Times:
For reasons practical, financial and definitely emotional, there seems to be a growing cohort of men … who are falling out of love with the holy institution of homeownership…
“Once upon a time, people bought houses to live in,” said William Clark, a geography professor at UCLA, who has written widely about homeownership. That fairy-tale attitude began to change in the 1970s, Mr. Clark said. And in the housing mania of the last decade, he said, many buyers started to see their homes as speculative investments — high-flying stocks that happened to come with wine cellars and four-car garages.
Today, “with the sudden run-up in foreclosures, you’re starting to see people ask, is housing a good investment?” he said. “In fact, it probably never was.”
Reality has set in with the get-rich-quick speculation aspect of homeownership gone. There aren’t all that many flippers wading into the market nowadays. Homes can bring comfort and stability to your life, but they can also feel overwhelming, more money pit than little slice of heaven.
Conveniently enough, it just so happens that right now is a fantastic time to be a renter, with more options and cheaper rents than we’ve seen in a long time. Per the WSJ:
Apartment vacancies hit a 30-year high in the fourth quarter, and rents fell as landlords scrambled to retain existing tenants and attract new ones.