If you’re in the financial position to consider the differences between finding California apartments for rent vs. houses to buy, there are three importing things you need to remember :
- Average cost of California apartments for rent vs. house payments
- Maintenance and other costs
- Overall market stability in California
Average cost of California apartments for rent vs. house payments
The median gross rent for California in 2009 was $1,116 per month and rent rates have only climbed a bit since then.
As of March 29, 2011, the average mortgage payment in the state of California is $1,912, and that doesn’t even include things like homeowner’s insurance, property taxes, or maintenance.
The average mortgage payment alone in California is nearly $800 more expensive each month than renting an apartment. What could you do with an extra $800 per month?
Maintenance and other costs
A few weeks ago, a big wind storm destroyed part of a shed outside of my home. It cost me several hundred dollars to repair it, plus a little over 7 hours of my time.
The worst part was that my 4-wheelers and riding lawn mower along with a chainsaw and some other equipment were exposed to the storm and could have been seriously damaged.
A large responsibility associated with owning a home is fixing the things that break, and the more the home ages, the more repairs are needed.
Apartment complexes insulate renters from this sort of cost. In a professionally managed complex, problems get fixed immediately, at no cost to the resident.
Before purchasing a home in California, you should carefully consider whether you’re in a position to take on all the extra costs. If not, maybe renting is still a good idea.
Overall market stability in California
It seems like every time you turn on the television, someone (news, politicians, etc.) is trying to convince you the recession has ended. But the truth is that home prices in California continue to drop.
According to Zillow.com, median home sale prices in California peaked in July 2007 at $491,000. They have dropped nearly every month since then and, as of March 2011, they now are at $299,500, with the trend line continuing to drop.
The time to buy won’t arrive till prices have flattened out for several months or longer. Once the prices do stabilize, the economy probably won’t shoot back up all at once — it will take time.
A good strategy in California for now is to keep renting a while longer. Then, when home sale prices flatten out or begin to climb slowly, start looking for a home, let your lease expire, and move forward with your purchase.
In the meanwhile, in California, apartments for rent are the smart choice.
How about you? Any luck finding apartments in CA for rent? Comment below.
*** If you’d like some help finding an apartment in California, I’ve got a whole staff of people standing by to help you for free. Call one of our apartment experts at 877-676-1767.
Or, click here: http://www.aptscalifornia.com/discover-california-apartments
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