Rent Wars

When Wes and I decided to jump ship from home ownership to renters, we knew we were taking a bit of a gamble. Home ownership is as permanent as you can get, really, where renting a home makes your living arrangement subject to the whims of your landlord.

Still, knowing the risk, we decided to give it a whirl. We knew we’d be paying far less in rent than we’d ever be able to pay for the mortgage of a comparable house, plus, renting has a lot of appeal.

For example, repairs. When the heat exchanger on our furnace broke and it was a $1200 repair, guess who didn’t have to pay for it! And when the motor seal on the garbage disposal broke and the disposal had to be replaced? Guess who was really happy to not have to pony up the funds to do so!

I’ll admit, it’s lovely not having to pay for that stuff. We get to live in a house that’s gorgeous, in a neighborhood we love, and we don’t have to worry about any of the headaches that accompany that privilege.

Equity? Whatever. Roof maintenance? Meh. HOA dues? Not my problem.

The only fly in the lovely rental ointment is our lease renewal. Our lease is up in January and we’ve been discussing lease renewal with our landlord for a couple months. He made it no secret that he wanted to charge us more in rent per month, but had yet to land on a definitive number.

Until Wednesday. When he sent us an email saying he wanted to charge us a lot more per month. Like, an 18% increase on our existing rent. Too much!

Wes came to our rescue and talked our landlord down to a rent we can all agree on. It’s still more than we’ve been paying, but not such an increase that it makes me choke on my Cheerios.

So, all’s well. For another year. When we might well have to do this whole rigamarole all over again.

Still, when I think about paying for maintenance crap, I still think renting is awesome. And when I think about not having to move for another year? I like it even more!

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