Moving into a new place is always an exciting time. But, before you can start unpacking boxes and making your new place feel like home, you have to decide what kind of living situation is right for you (and your family).
Do you want the space and freedom of a house? Or would you prefer the convenience and community of an apartment complex?
There are a lot of factors (and home buying red flags) that go into this decision – from cost to maintenance to lifestyle. In this article, we’re going to explore the pros and cons of each option to help you make an informed decision about where you want to live.
Renting a House: Key Features and Advantages
1. More space.
One of the biggest advantages of renting a house is that you’ll have more space than you would in an apartment. This extra space can be great if you have a growing family or want more room to spread out.
Unlike an apartment, you won’t have neighbors living right next to you or above/below you. This can be a huge plus if you value your privacy and quiet time at home.
2. More control over your living space.
You’ll also have more control over your living space when you rent a house. What does this mean?
Well, for starters, you’ll be able to paint the walls and make other cosmetic changes to customize your home exactly how you want it. And, if you have permission from your landlord, you may even be able to make more significant changes like adding new appliances or fixtures.
This level of control also extends to your yard. With a house, you’ll have your own outdoor space that you can use however you please. This can be great if you have pets or simply enjoy spending time outdoors.
3. More privacy.
As we mentioned, renting a house will give you more privacy than renting an apartment. With a house, you won’t have to worry about nosy neighbors or thin walls that make it easy to hear everything that’s going on in your home.
If you value your privacy and want to feel like you have your oasis, renting a house is the way to go.
Renting a House: Disadvantages
1. More expensive.
One of the biggest disadvantages of renting a house is that it can be more expensive than renting an apartment. This is especially true if you’re renting in a big city where space is at a premium. In addition to your monthly rent, you may also be responsible for:
- Paying for your utilities (electricity, water, gas, etc.)
- Maintaining your yard
- Dealing with any repairs or maintenance issues that come up.
Of course, the actual cost will vary depending on the size and location of the house you rent. But, generally, renting a house will be more expensive than renting an apartment.
2. More responsibility.
If you’re the type who likes to have everything taken care of for you, renting a house may not be the best option. That’s because, when you rent a house, you’ll be responsible for maintaining it inside and out.
This means that you’ll need to take care of things like:
- Yard work
- Pest control
- Minor repairs and maintenance issues
Suppose something major goes wrong (like a broken pipe or a faulty AC unit), it will also be up to you to either fix it or pay someone to do it for you. So, renting a house may not be the best option if you’re not the handy type.
3. Less flexibility.
Surprisingly, renting a house can offer less flexibility than renting an apartment. That’s because most landlords require you to sign a lease lasting at least a year (sometimes up to three years).
This means that if you need to move for any reason, you may be stuck paying rent on a home that you no longer live in.
Renting an Apartment: Key Features and Advantages
1. More affordable.
One of the biggest advantages of renting an apartment is that it’s usually more affordable than renting a house. Renting an apartment is typically cheaper because of reasons like:
- Utilities are often included in your monthly rent
- You’re not responsible for maintaining the property
- There’s less space to heat and cool, which means lower utility bills.
Of course, there are exceptions to this rule (especially if you live in a big city). But, in general, renting an apartment will be more affordable than renting a house.
2. More amenities.
When you rent an apartment, you’ll also have access to amenities that you wouldn’t necessarily have in a house. For example, most apartment complexes have on-site laundry facilities, fitness centers, and swimming pools – all of which you would have to pay for separately if you lived in a house.
Some apartment complexes also offer other amenities like concierge services, dry cleaning, and grocery delivery. So, if you’re looking for a hassle-free lifestyle, renting an apartment is probably the way to go.
3. More flexible leases.
Another advantage of renting an apartment is that most landlords offer more flexible lease terms. This means that you’re not locked into a lease for a year or more like you would be if you were renting a house.
So, if your job situation changes or you need to move for any other reason, it’s usually easier to break your lease and move out of an apartment than it would be to move out of a house.
4. More social.
Apartment complexes offer a more social living environment than houses do. This is because you’ll be living near your neighbors (usually with thin walls separating you).
This can be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on your personality. But, if you’re the type of person who likes to socialize, renting an apartment is probably a better option than renting a house.
Renting an Apartment: Disadvantages
1. Less privacy.
Because you’ll be living close to your neighbors, you may have to deal with less privacy when you rent an apartment. This can be a problem if you work from home or if you have young children who need a quiet space to study.
2. No yard.
Another downside of renting an apartment is that you probably won’t have access to a yard. This can be a big problem if you have pets that need to run around or if you enjoy spending time outdoors.
3. Limited storage space.
Most apartments are smaller than houses, so you’ll have less storage space for your belongings. This can be a problem if you have a lot of stuff or if you like to entertain guests often.
Check out vintage-style decorations to give your limited space that extra touch of luxury!
4. More noise.
Naturally, living close to your neighbors also means that you’ll have to deal with more noise. If you’re a light sleeper or if you work from home, this can be a big problem.
FAQs about Renting a House vs. Apartment
Q: Which is better for families – renting a house or an apartment?
A: It depends. If you have young children, renting a house might be a better option because it will give them more space to run around.
But, if you’re single or don’t have kids, renting an apartment is probably the way to go. This is because apartments are usually more affordable and offer more amenities than houses.
Q: Can you negotiate rent when renting a house?
A: Usually, yes. Unlike apartment complex landlords, most private landlords are open to negotiating rent prices. So, if you’re looking to save money, it’s worth trying to negotiate your rent price with your landlord.
Q: What’s the difference between renting a house and an apartment?
A: The biggest difference is that apartments are usually less expensive than houses and offer more amenities. But, apartments also tend to be smaller than houses and have thinner walls, which means you’ll have less privacy.
After weighing the advantages and disadvantages, you should have a better idea of whether renting a house or an apartment is the right choice.
Reach out to a real estate agent or property manager in your area. They should be able to give you more information about the renting process and help you find a place perfect for your needs.