Do You Rent Or Own The Home You Live In?

Discussion in 'Retirement & Leisure' started by Babs Hunt, Apr 22, 2017.

  1. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    Our home is a hundred and seventeen years old, one of the first homes on the second street built in Millinocket, and we own it. No mortgage. It cost only $14,500 in 2000, but people have bought perfectly functional homes in Millinocket for under a thousand, even recently. I know one woman who paid $600 for a two-story home with a full basement. It needed some work, but nothing that would prevent someone from living in it.

    Ours was a 3-unit apartment building when we bought it, and we've never been sure of its history. I have an old postcard that shows only our house and the larger one across the street from us, plus another couple of houses that were under construction, on our part of the street. Since there were no building code requirements then, there's no record of the plans at the town office.

    Our building code officer wanted to do an inspection of our house in order to have record of it on file, but we refused to let him in. There was nothing in it for us, since he is a jerk. Without a record at the town office, I can do pretty much whatever I want on the inside without a permit.

    One story has it that our house was built as a boarding house for millworkers, as the one across the street clearly was, since his house has multiple stairways leading to parts of the house that are not accessible from the same floor.

    Another story is that our house was built for one of the mill supervisors, and was turned into an apartment building in the 1940s. That makes more sense to me because in making three apartments out of it, they had done weird things, like placing a toilet under the stairwell and turning what had clearly been a closet into a small bathroom. Plus, we had two bedrooms in the back that looked to have been a porch that had been separated and closed in, to create the two bedrooms. Plus, they had an odd piecemeal door halfway up the stairs.

    When I still had the energy and the money, we turned it back into a single-family home again, removing two of the three kitchens, as well as the toilet under the stairs. We removed the wall between the two back bedrooms and made a long library out of it. We removed two of the walls to a shower, to enlarge another room, and I put a floor on the attic, and had someone build a stairway to it. Actually, we didn't like the first stairway, so we later had someone else rebuild it. We removed other walls, and added walls. I still have to find the energy to finish the attic.

    We also own our camp, which has been paid for too.

    For most of my life, however, I have rented - and I hate renting.
     
    #26
  2. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    For me it was just the opposite @Ina I. Wonder when I was raising my children I liked knowing we were buying a home so that our kids would not have to be uprooted and leave friends behind or change schools, etc.

    My whole childhood was spent moving from one place to another because my dad was in the Military and then he became a Salesman who traveled too. I never got to make and keep friends, was always changing schools, etc. and I knew that I absolutely did not want that for my own children. Once my children were married and had homes of their own though I found I did not want to be tied down to home ownership anymore.
     
    #27
  3. Frank Sanoica

    Frank Sanoica Very Well-Known Member
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    @Babs Hunt
    Very, very nice place! Pretty and quaint. I also like that bowl of yellow squash!
    Frank
     
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  4. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    That bowl of squash is actually a bowl of bananas Frank but it could have been yellow squash...since we often have that too. :) We do love our cozy Acadiana Cottage that is definitely "Home" to us. :)
     
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  5. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Your cottage would be my dream size home! Perfect for me and Pickles but it's impossible here in a decent area to get that for $450!

    My housing issue is complicated. Bought the house in 2003 for $255,000, it's almost 2,000 sq ft.

    Next year my husband died...daughter took over paying the $2,000 mortgage and taxes and insurance. 2 years later I could have sold for $455,000 then the market crashed and crashed badly here.

    Now we've put the house in a trust, I don't pay anything except utilities and maintenance which eats up about $1,000 a month depends on the season.

    The house is in a trust so that if I end up in god knows what situation it can't be taken away...
     
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  6. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    That's exactly one of the kinds of things I wanted to avoid with home ownership Chrissy. Being in that position with your home would make me feel tied down to it and not free to pick up at will and move if I felt like it. You are blessed that you don't have to pay the mortgage, etc. but still your utilities and maintenance on a home that size is eating up a sizeable chunk of your income, not to mention the energy you have to expend on cleaning, etc. a home of that size.

    Our home has about 600 square feet but it is the perfect size for the two of us and probably the only thing we don't have is a carport or garage for our car (which would be nice). I do realize that where you live it would be just about impossible to find a place like ours and pay just $450. per month for it. The home my ex and I sold had over 2000 square feet and once the kids are out of something that big...it really wasn't what we needed anymore at all. We also own a home here in Lafayette which is only about 1400 square feet and which my ex lives in. It is paid for and when we divorced I gave my ex the legal right to live in and maintain it until he either sells it or passes away. So in a way I do still own a home...but have none of the responsibility of it and don't want to have it. If he passes away before me I will have the right to move back into it if I want until I pass. But this is not something I plan to do.
     
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  7. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    True about the extra work...even if I don't use 3 bedrooms, they still get dusty etc...pain in the butt.

    Also, if my daughter dies before I do (don't even like typing that) there are provisions in her will and the trust that this house will be payed off from their estate...if it isn't already.
     
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  8. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    Our couch opens into a queen size bed for grandkid "sleepovers!" :) I laugh when my siblings say I need another bedroom, maybe they think so but I am not a people person and like knowing we have no extra bedroom for sleepovers for others all the time.
     
    #33
  9. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    I have plenty of room for guests but since the boys got older, my daughter never comes here anymore, I go there.

    Just too many things going on for them over the weekend. Plus now that they are older they don't need me to babysit.

    Back then my daughter would come and then I'd watch the boys while she went shopping in peace. :)

    They still have their room though that I call the boys room...still a few odds and ends of toys in the closet.

    At home they had everything in the way of expensive toys but would love coming here and checking out all the crap toys I bought at the dollar store...They'd come in give me a big hug and run to the closet. :)

    They also loved that the ice cream man came In my neighborhood.

    Also, as usual...I'm going off track! :)
     
    #34
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2017
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  10. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    I have my totes of toys for the grandkids too. Now that my youngest ones will be moving back here from Texas those totes will come out more often once again and I'm looking forward to this more than I can say. :)

    My older grandkids now like to play with the outdoor games in our big yard or with the games for the Wii now and they don't come as often as they used to either now that they are all in school and after school activities, etc.

    I think if I would be more of a people person I would need a bigger home for having everyone over for Holiday meals, etc. but since all of my daughter's have nice size homes and they have blessed me with wanting to take over the majority of the entertaining duties now...our home doesn't need the space for this kind of thing anymore either. We do have plenty of outdoor space to hold barbecues or seafood boils with our family and play outdoor games though so every so often (when we're in the mood) we all enjoy doing this. Next time we have one I'll share the pictures. :)
     
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  11. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    Same here, my daughter has the biggest house....almost 5,000 sq ft. Everyone goes there.
     
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  12. Martin Alonzo

    Martin Alonzo Very Well-Known Member
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    Most of my life I lived in an apartment. I had a store and three different homes all heavily mortgaged. So I never owned anything just made other people and banks rich. After retiring and ending up in the Dominican Republic started over and with my pension of about $2,000 Canadian per month and only savings was my boat. I built a two bedroom home and lived off of the money at the same time. Selling the boat $60,000 Canadian built a two bedroom apartment on the house and furnished the home. With no money owing on any of it. There is no land tax no building tax and the cost of utilities is reasonable.

    While I was struggling in Canada I had to pay taxes on land buildings and because I did not own it out right had to buy insurance. If I could move what I have now into Canada I would not be able to afford it.

    Since I built the house I built a swimming pool 25 ft square which we don’t use now also a two bedroom with bath building behind the house. Workshop 15ft. X 20ft. Which ends up being a storage shed.
     
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  13. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    When I married my Honey and we lived in Jacksonville, FL we rented in a small and pretty old apartment complex that I loved. We lived in a one bedroom unit which had a very nice porch area and when we sat outside our view was an inner court area with a concrete area with a few barbecue grills and picnic tables. I loved renting at this complex and if money was no problem I think I would have purchased that Complex and turned it into a Seniors only place. But at the time the people who lived in the complex were all ages and all nationalities. It was the first time I had ever experienced people from all over the World....and I loved it.

    As with all places we can live there was good and bad but those five years we lived there were years I will remember always and with fondness. My Honey is a people person and he made friends with everyone in that complex and I would share cajun food with many of them...who in return would often gift us with food from their culture. It was one of the most interesting times of my life meeting people from all over the world and sharing our lives with them.
     
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  14. Gloria Mitchell

    Gloria Mitchell Very Well-Known Member
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    Excatly why extra bedroom has other things in ...and no bed
     
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  15. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    :D Aren't we smart though.
     
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  16. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    When I moved back to North Idaho from the farm in Missouri, in 2000; I had the property that my parents had owned since around the Great Depression, and I bought an old 12x60 trailer and put in a septic tank and moved in. The first winter, I didn't even have electricity or water, but by the next spring, I was able to get the electricity put in, and hauled water for another year after that, at which time I had the trailer all paid for and could afford to have water hooked up from the local rural water system.
    Later, I had a cover put over the trailer so that the snow would slide off in the winter, and also started a lean-to barn for the horses. I didn't expect to ever move again, and thought I would die on the same property as my folks lived on when i was born.
    Life changes.
    I met Bobby, we got married, and he found a job in Boise, way in the bottom of the state; so we had to sell everything, and move.
    Then, my heart was getting worse, and Robin asked us to move out here to Alabama so I could be closer to her; so we left everything again, bought an old motor home, loaded up ourselves and the dogs, and came out here.
    Now, we live in Robin's rental home, and this is probably where we will stay. Basically, we take care of repairs, just like we would if we owned the house; but when we are gone, or have to be in a care-home, there is no problem with us owning the house.
    So, it is somewhere in between owning and renting; but works out good for us.
    We have 3 bedrooms; but one is like a pantry/storage room, full of shelves, and the other back bedroom is our exercise area and has Bobby's home gym, and our exercise bike in it; so we really only have one bedroom that has a bed in it.
     
    #41
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2017
  17. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    I think at different seasons of our lives different things and homes work better for us Yvonne. :) I hope to spend the rest of my life with my Honey here in our cozy Acadiana Cottage that is home to us. I still would like to travel and see some other places but that might be done more with my kids and grandkids taking us along for the ride than us two doing this from now on...this just remains to be seen. I don't really want to move again unless it is to my eternal home. :)
     
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  18. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    Why I like renting our place to live too is because sometimes once you think you own something...it really ends up owning you...even when it really doesn't "fit" you anymore.
     
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  19. Lon Tanner

    Lon Tanner Well-Known Member
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    I have divested myself of all real estate and vehicles and live in a two bed two bath age 55 & up Apartment Complex.
     
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  20. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    Downsizing is what I call it. :)
     
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  21. Kitty Carmel

    Kitty Carmel Well-Known Member
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    I sold the house I owned right after the crash of 2009. Had I sold it a year earlier, I would have much more money. I think there are advantages and problems with both renting and owning. Condos in my area are now out of my price range. I'm still looking for a mobile in a park. My biggest fear in some dumpy low income apartment (though I know they can be nice but there are waiting lists also) and not being able to have my pets or being in a situation I'm stuck into.

    These years pre retirement are certainly NOT turning out as I had hoped and I'm beginning to fear retirement wondering what will happen.
     
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  22. Martin Alonzo

    Martin Alonzo Very Well-Known Member
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    My niece just bought a new home which was built a few years ago and never lived in here in the Dominican Republic it is her first house than she has own out right with nothing owning and no taxes. It sometime hard to put your head around buying something that has no sales tax, house tax,and land tax. The house is solid block tile floors iron bars on all doors and window. She paid $25,000 US so she found it cheaper to own than rent she is going to use it as her retirement home. Now she is paying $1,000 Canadian per month in Toronto.
     
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  23. Gloria Mitchell

    Gloria Mitchell Very Well-Known Member
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    :( I understand, and agree about the futures of our so called retirement.
     
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  24. Sheldon Scott

    Sheldon Scott Very Well-Known Member
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    Our house and 25 acres are getting harder and harder for us to take care of. I expect in the not too distant future for us to sell and rent an apartment somewhere, maybe in or near the city where most of our medical services are.
     
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  25. Gloria Mitchell

    Gloria Mitchell Very Well-Known Member
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    @Sheldon Scott...as we age, we must continue to downsize everything in our lives. My hubby use to want at least 5 acres a all that went with it. i am like nooo you don't, because someday in the near future you are not going want to mow 5 acres, and do maintenance on a house. He is now content doing his wood working in the garage here at our apartment, and letting mainatance guys handle all the other stuff:)
     
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