Time to begin our 10-day countdown. Coming in at number ten is my relief at finally getting out of the rent trap. I know a bigger percentage of people prefer to rent nowadays, but I've always been a great believer in home ownership. It's something deeply ingrained in the English and I am no exception. Home ownership gives you a sense of liberty because you are basically free to do whatever you want with few constraints. Our home will be part of a community that has a home owners association, but the power of the HOA is really limited to what happens beyond the walls, especially in the case of a fully detached house like ours.
My wife and I have been renting for four years, and we've hated it. We hate having noisy neighbors who drive noisy cars. We hate climbing eleventy-billion steps with all our shopping. We hate not having a garage for our cars. We hate not having central air conditioning. We hate sharing the water and heating bill with families who have eighteen showers per day and have their heat turned way up with all their windows open. We hate having to close our windows because people are smoking nearby. We hate having half our stuff in storage. We hate that the portable, in-wall air conditioning units are basically nests for stink bugs.
The worst thing about renting, however, is that you essentially pour money down a drain. A house is an investment. For the most part, your monthly payments go toward the purchase of your home. But rent payments aren't an investment at all, so when we saw our rent go up to the same amount as a mortgage payment, we knew it was time to buy.