Over the years, we have seen clients transition from home-ownership to rent. The stress of maintaining a property and the costs involved in its upkeep can become too much to bear, which makes a simple monthly payment for a home that much more attractive. Renting can be a great solution if you need to free up cash for a new business activity, moving out of the city and exploring various housing and neighborhood options, or just looking to decrease your debt (with cash generated from the sale of your home). Regardless of the reasons, moving from homeownership to rent is a huge change. Here are some tips that can help you through the process.
Don’t Search for The Perfect House
If you have had a great property for a long time, complete with a pool and that perfect kitchen, don’t set the same expectations when you look for a rental. No solid countertops but the rent is reasonable and within your budget? Don’t brush it off! A lot of “norms” you may have established as a homeowner may need to be tweaked and new factors taken into consideration. Is the landlord accommodating and fair? What does the rent include? Is the location close to amenities that are important to you (e.g. pharmacies, grocery stores)? Analyze the bigger picture and set new standards for your ideal rental home. With the right mindset, the change will come easier (and faster).
Managing Your (new) Finances
It may seem like a downgrade now especially when everyone is striving for homeownership, but renting could save you a lot of money! If your monthly rental works out to be less than your old mortgage payment and it includes some rental utilities, your monthly outlay could be significantly reduced. Also considering that you no longer need to pay for “homeowners’ expenses” such as insurance, property tax, condo fees and mortgage interest, the savings year over year could be huge. Don’t forget those costly home maintenance that you once had to do every couple of years – roof replacement, new furnace, new flooring. They are not your worry anymore! But before you get too excited and put a downpayment on your dream car, it may be prudent to talk to your bank or financial advisor about your new set of finances. Investing wisely now with your savings could reap benefits for you in the near future and you may just hop back into homeownership again if you so choose to do so.
Learn to Communicate (But Not Overcommunicate)
For some of us, communication isn’t our strongest trait but it is vital in a tenant-landlord relationship. Establish first the best mode of communication between you and your landlord (e.g. text, call, Facebook Messenger, email) then work out the criteria that warrant you to reach out. Did the furnace stop working in the dead of winter? That would be an ideal situation to call your landlord. The lightbulb needs changing? Maybe that could be a DIY task while you log that down and update your landlord by email. Speaking of logs, make sure to keep detailed notes of issues that occur, when you reached out, and when you issue was resolved. It is the landlord’s responsibility to make sure that you have a safe and functional home to live in but due to other commitments, they may not respond immediately to every query you raise. That is why you should leave calls (or other communication modes) for the most urgent of issues, that way your landlord knows you mean business when you do reach out.
Be Positive and Forward Looking
Whatever society’s view is on renting vs homeownership, remember that you have to do what is best for you and your family in your situation. As discussed earlier, there can be significant monetary benefits to renting, not to mention the stress it alleviates when you rid yourself of all the bills and maintenance costs you once worried for. If you find yourself ready to transition from homeownership to rent and need to sell your home fast, call us. We can close on your Calgary property in 2 weeks and we’ll buy it in any condition. Through our network of partners, we can even help you find a suitable rental home that’ll meet your needs. Let’s chat!