Reading through the morning newspaper, a headline in the real estate section caught my eye: Homebuilder Woos Apartment Tenants with 12-Month Rent Rebate Offer Toward a House. The article went on to explain that a developer who builds both individual houses and multi-family complexes, has developed this innovative scheme in hopes of luring families away from apartments toward home ownership.
Thinking about this unusual offer, my immediate reaction was … why would anyone do such a thing? What would make someone leave an apartment to buy a house?
Just kidding, of course, for home ownership has, historically, been a major part of the “American Dream” with young families, in particular, seeking their own plot of land upon which to raise a family. But, that said, my wife, Bonnie, and I are in a very different place when it comes to our choice of domicile and lifestyle; just over two years ago, we sold our home and moved into a superb 55+ Active Adult apartment community … and we love it.
Recently, while sorting through some old financial records, I came across a list of the recurring bills we paid when we owned our last house. Frankly, I had forgotten how many there were and, when compared to those we now pay in our apartment, the remarkable difference is just one reminder of why we celebrate our decision to live where we do:
What We Paid in Our House What We Pay in Our Apartment
Real Estate Taxes
City Services (water,sewer,trash)
Heat/AC Service Contract
In the midst of writing this blog post, the doorbell rang. Stepping away from my desk, I went to the door where I found our maintenance man stopping by for routine replacement of the air filter in the heating and AC unit in our apartment. This was perfect timing, for it reminded me of one more very important reason why apartment living is exactly right at this stage of our lives … on the few occasions when we have had to submit a maintenance request, the work has been done quickly, professionally and at no cost to us. And here’s the best part … it is always done by someone else!
It will be interesting to learn whether the new “Rent Rebate” idea works out for this builder, and we certainly wish him well. And though I am sure we are outside the “target demographic” for this offer, we would not consider anyway … even for a moment … buying a house. We owned homes for more than fifty years and, without question, doing so enabled us to raise our children in comfortable surroundings and good communities. But now that it is just the two of us … well, this is our “me time,” and we are really making the most of it!
We just passed the two-year mark in our apartment home, which likely qualifies Bonnie and me as “settled in.” Even so, barely a day goes by without one of us turning to the other and asking: “Why didn’t we do this sooner?”