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The Dirt on Renting vs. Owning

Posted by John Hathorn on April 5, 2013
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Recently I came across an article that did a poll and found that the American dream to purchase a home is slowly fading. Yes, the majority of people in America still would love to own their home but many are not discouraged about the idea of having to live as a renter. The recession and the melt down of property values have probably contributed significantly to this shift.

North of Montana Santa Monica 621 Marguerita

Please call 310.924.4014 for an appointment to see this home.

It is easy to see both sides of the coin. Renters do not have to keep up with the maintenance, insurance and of course the property taxes. And unless you have signed a long lease, there is no long commitment; if you want to move you can usually do so with 30 days notice to the owner.

On the other hand, as good as that sounds, renting may not be the best financial decision. In many areas across the US, property values are rebounding nicely and in the long term, real estate is one of the best investments available. Some used to say that there was an inverse relationship to real estate vs. Wall Street returns on investments. Assuming you can scrape together a down payment, and can get past the liquidity problem, the “psychological satisfaction” of owning is great. That psychological value is different for all of us. Being connected to your residence and community on a deeper level, having some “skin in the game” can be enormously gratifying – not only to the owner but to the neighborhood.

Of course this is not to say that all renters do not care about the house or community they live in, but some clearly do not, as evidenced by the fact that very often it is easy to spot a rental property vs. an owner occupied property.

By the way, North Santa Monica rentals are going for about $3.50 per sq ft.

Click here to read the Macarthur Foundation Survey.

Several Exciting New Listings this Week!

621 Marguerita Ave. –   5bd + 6.5ba.  $8,125,000.   Built in 2010, great location west of 7th. 14,541 sq. ft. lot size. We sold this as a lot value in 2008 for $3,500,000.

401 25th St. –   4bd + 3.75ba.  $6,900,000.   Southeast corner of Carlyle and 25th, Colonial Revival. Property spans two lots.  Updated and restored.   Expansive 17,400 sq. ft. lot.

549 9th St. –   5bd + 4ba.  $3,355,000.   Built in 1996. Contemporary Mediterranean apx. 3,500 sq. ft., with an open floor plan.  Close to Roosevelt  School.

721 Georgina Ave. –   4bd + 5ba.  $3,099,000.   Southwest corner of Lincoln and Georgina. Renovated Mediterranean on an oversized corner lot.

2520 Alta Ave. –   3bd + 2.75ba.  $1,997,000.   Corner of 26th and Alta, 1920’s Spanish home around 2,283 sq. ft. We had this listed last year before the market turned at the same price. It will likely sell this time with multiple offers.

New Sales this Week

243 22nd St. –   5bd + 5.5ba.  $5,795,000.   Double lot with a tennis court, pool and traditional style home. 4,600+ sq. ft. 3 level home, 15,098 sq. ft lot. Newer kitchen, spacious formal dining room, and maid’s quarters.

428 21st Pl.–   5bd + 4.5ba.  $3,925,000.   Re- listed and back on market after a recent failed escrow and a false start last year. 4,800+ sq. ft. home on a large 9,015 sq. ft. lot. 4bd up and 1bd down. Pool and spa, beautiful patio area.

Closed Deals this Week

428 Euclid St. –  3bd + 2ba.  $2,425,000

Pence Hathorn Silver Active Properties:

13868 W. Sunset Blvd. – 4bd + 3.75ba – $2,895,000

8606 W. Olympic Blvd. – 3bd + 2.5ba – $1,449,000

1224 Thayer Ave. #102 –  3bd + 2.75ba – $1,195,000

937 12th St. #306 –  2bd + 2ba – $699,000

Search for more homes, see real time analytics and learn about the North Santa Monica / North of Montana Ave. community on our North of Montana blog.

Add your comments (scroll down to the “Add Your Comment” section) and read other blogs.

And please call my mobile phone (310) 924-4014 with any questions.

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