The benefits of renting.

We have long championed the point that renting is the thinking person’s choice when it comes to putting a roof over your head and now it seems that renters are beginning to be confident about their position in society, quite right too !

When I left home some long time ago the right thing to do was to buy, house prices were increasing every month and high inflation seemed to take away the pain of interest payments on the mortgage. Government support was phenomenal, tax relief, support for high loan to value mortgages, low stamp duty, you’d have been mad not to take advantage and many did.

This led to a kind of intellectual snobbery amongst the competitive young house buyer which had some basis in fact, it was almost a sport to see who could run up the ladder the fastest and if you fell off you had to get back on, the entry ticket was borrow, borrow, borrow.

The point of having a property that provided what you needed as a home was largely ignored in the rush up the ladder as was the spectre of negative equity which began to catch out more and more gullible and inexperienced housebuyers.

It has taken the biggest economic crash for almost a century for people to begin to think and ask questions.

Why buy? Prices at best will stay level for many years and in real terms will cost many people dear. We know many examples where people who rushed to buy in the government’s attempt to stoke the market earlier in 2012 by reducing stamp duty are sitting on properties that are worth much less than they saved.

Young people in 2019 need flexibility, they need to have a sustainable budget and a mortgage ball and chain with variable rates and uncertain house values is no longer a sensible choice.

Improved regulation, deposit protection and professionalism have raised the status and profile of renting, the logic is clear.

So the message is you can be proud of being a tenant and when the time is right (perhaps with help from parents/inheritance) and you want to be tied down you can buy. It isn’t compulsory though nor do you have to buy in the UK if you don’t want to, houses are cheaper in most of mainland Europe and can provide cheap holidays and income potential.

The continent has worked this way for generations.