If I never had another landlord again, it would be too soon.
My parents had a lot of kids. One consequence of having a huge brood is that you have to have a bigger-than-average house. Most available bigger-than-average houses are for sale, not for rent. And with a ton of kids, they weren’t buying new. So my parents have made buying big ol’ houses and fixing them up room by room their life’s work.
(The side story on this is that I can do all sorts of useful home repair stuff, like simple electrical, or basic plumbing. I’m awesome at hanging and finishing drywall and I am a whiz on drywall stilts. *Life skills. Respect.)
Lately, in the last year or so, my parents have downsized. Part of the process is apartment living and they love it. My Dad, particularly, is delighted. One of his first comments after getting all moved into an apartment building with a maintenance guy who fixed the roof FOR them (!!!) was, “why would anyone ever want to buy a house?”
My answer to him was, “landlords.”
It’s very true that apartment living allows all sorts of freedoms and flexibility. We get the benefit of a beautiful home without the hassle of thinking about it long-term. We don’t have to fix things; we’re not supposed to fix things.
Drawbacks, though, are all based on the fact that it’s not our place. Sometimes, things don’t get fixed. And we have to decide whether we’re going to fight it out or just pay for repairs ourselves. We get burned on things. Someone else (who barely knows us) gets a say about how we live and maintain where we live. It gets old.
Of course, this is why people end up buying houses. I know this. And even though I know all this I’m still not ready to be tied down to a house. I’m not quite at a point where the freedom from a third party is a fair trade for freedom to move about easily. For now, they’re a necessary evil. But not always.