When it started, who knows, but our desire for homeownership seems to be ingrained in our culture. Unlike our European neighbours where renting rather than owning is more the norm, we have a deep-rooted expectation that when you ‘grow up’ you will buy your own home. But is this practical? In today’s fluid society is homeownership right for everyone?
A job for life was a luxury for our ancestors who knew that working hard or their employer would guarantee a secure role within the company for their working life. This ideal, a job for life, is extremely rare today as people move, change jobs for career progression and sadly company’s close. It is therefore, understandable why some professionals are deciding to rent rather than buy. To them, homeownership can end up causing problems rather than allowing them to progress in their chosen career. “Homeownership is just not realistic for me”, says Jayne, “I’m in a management position in my company which means I could be moved to another branch at any time. I love that I get to experience different places and travel, owning a home would prove problematic and a stress I don’t need. Renting is the solution that works with my career at present.”
Employment is a major factor to many professionals renting including those that commute. With the lure of a better quality of life available in our beautiful city, we’re seeing an increasing number of people employed in London making their home to Bath. Renting a property allows them time to get to know our city and discover whether it is where they would like to reside long term.
It’s not just professional couples that are looking at renting as a positive long term decision, families and the over 55’s are also making this lifestyle choice. Schools have played a decision in renting for a number of families where they have found it impossible to buy a home in their preferred catchment area. Renting a home close to their preferred school means that they are more likely to secure a school place.
Financial stability is often quoted by our over 55 clients. Looking to make the most of their retirement and live their life to the fullest, they’ve sold their family home to rent. Knowing they no longer have the burden of the upkeep of a property, they are moving to rental apartments where they know the maintenance of the home is no longer their responsibility. Not only does it provide them with a home but also a guaranteed monthly outgoing allowing them to plan for their next adventure.
What are the advantages of renting?
- Flexibility to move easily should your situation change.
- Security, knowing that your property will be maintained.
- Financial, although there are letting agency fees, they don’t come close to the upfront costs of buying a home. Plus you no longer have the on going costs of repairing and maintaining a property.
- Safer, the risk of renting a home is safer than buying.
It has been predicted by the National Association of Landlords that the proportion of private renters is to rise from 20% of households in 2015 to approximately 29% by 2025. Our lettings team strongly advise that if you’re looking to rent in Bath you need to act quickly as no sooner are we advertise a property it is rented.
In this rental market you need to move quickly, so here are our top tips for getting ready to rent.
- Have your finances in place, as credit checks will be made.
- References, have references from past landlords, employers etc. to hand.
- Be prepared and check what fees you need to pay in advance.
- Build a relationship with letting agents so they can keep you informed when a new property comes onto the market.
Although the national press is focused on homeownership, we have found that the pressure to buy is fading. Buying a property may still be a desire for a large number of people but the choice to rent is a decision made on personal preference and not just because ‘they can’t afford to buy’. Renting is no longer seen as a stigma but as in Europe, it is a lifestyle choice that works. If you’re looking to rent in Bath then let our team help you find the right home for you.