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To buy or not to buy

1 June 2009 by superlative

No not the BBC1 property show featuring the house-buying fitty Kristian Digby, I’m referring to an actual dilemma here.

I’ve been wondering lately about whether we should actually buy a flat like we’ve been talking about for the last few months, or whether we should just move to a nicer rented place. Having looked at some rental adverts over the weekend, I’ve realised that we could afford to rent a really really nice flat now for the same monthly cost (or in fact a bit less) than a mortgage would be. I’m talking swish kitchen, decked sun terrace, and in some cases even allocated parking. This is compared to buying a flat that would potentially be quite a bit smaller, quite a bit further out of town, and probably not as nice.

So now I am conflicted. On the one hand I have that very British notion that it’s good to own your own place, where you can decorate it and change it how you like, and where your money is going into a long-term investment that you actually get to keep (supposedly, assuming you don’t lose money and get trapped in negative equity). But on the other hand I think that on the continent, like in Germany, loads more people rent than buy, and it doesn’t seem to do them any harm. And I would have more cash left over each month for holidays and toys and things, and I could get a really nice flat straight away.

Hmm, I don’t know now. I might type “should I rent or buy” into Google and let it tell me what to do, that usually works.


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