Your twenties are often billed as the best years of your life. The time in which you can enjoy the privileges of adulthood without quite so many of the responsibilities. Most twenty somethings have a job and a modicum of disposable income, without the responsibilities of marriages, mortgages and kids. At least that’s the theory. By the time we come to our mid to late twenties we are met with a stark realisation… Friends lied to us. We don’t get to spend our every waking moment sipping lattes and chatting with our friends, our day job demands far more of our time, effort and energy than we’d been led to believe and we’re faced with constant pressure to climb the career ladder and the property ladder simultaneously like some sort of mad spider.
In the face of this, and as we see more and more of our friends, buying houses, getting engaged and *gasp* having babies, it’s not uncommon to feel frustrated and filled with self loathing at the prospect of staying where we are. We can feel like we’re stagnating or missing out on opportunities that will give us financial security in our later years. But put a pin in your self-loathing because there are many reasons why, at this time of your life, renting is the better option…
Renting keeps you free
Most millennials will have around a dozen jobs between the ages of 18 and 48. The changing face of the job market means that twenty somethings are much more likely to relocate to pursue new opportunities than their parents. Obviously, this is much harder to do with a mortgage. You don’t want to wind up kicking yourself because a golden opportunity passed you by because you were saddled to your property.
You’re not yet ready to settle down
One of the great things about your twenties is that you likely spend them in a range of different jobs and homes, re-inventing yourself as you go. Over this time you will learn things about yourself and your preferences that will inform the kind of home you opt for when you feel that the time is right to make that commitment. So long as you can cover your rent and your Lemonade home insurance payments, you’re sorted. Owning your own home comes with lots of extra costs that renters don’t necessarily consider as well as tying you down to a property that you may feel very differently about in a few years’ time.
Rent is not dead money
It’s a common fallacy for people to suggest that renting a home is dead money, and that all you’re doing is paying off someone else’s mortgage. The truth is that your rent payments go towards giving you shelter and the comforts of home. Besides, the prospect of owning property (especially if you live in London) is pretty far beyond what can be realistically expected of most people in their twenties.
Twenty somethings have an unfortunate habit of looking at the big 3-0 as the end of their lives. The truth is that your thirties are almost identical to your twenties. There will be many opportunities to settle down, but you must do so for the right reasons for you.
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