Your home is more than just a roof over your head. Homeownership has long been a big part of the American Dream. A great majority of people in this country believe that owning their own home is either essential or important to achieving a feeling of success and prosperity. Of course, there are many financial benefits to homeownership. But having a permanent place to raise a family, to establish your own traditions, to host gatherings, and to plan for the future are also real benefits of owning.
Your life becomes more stable once you own a home. Unless you choose to move again, you shouldn’t be forced to do it. Moving is hard, aggravating, and definitely expensive. Many renters who find themselves moving from one rental to another know what a hassle it can be. With your own home, you can make long-term plans.
Owning means you can suit your own tastes, not follow rules set by a landlord. Whether you want to decorate in a modern style, rustic, or shabby chic, the choice is yours. You can tear out the hedge or plant a tree. Choose paint colors or wallpaper. Bring in any size pet that you like. Tear down walls or gut the kitchen for a complete remodel. Now you are the landlord, so you get to make the decisions.
You may sleep better and enjoy your leisure time more. You may even be a better cook when you become a homeowner. Well, those improvements may not exactly be the ones that you notice. But studies and reports found on the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) website make some rather wonderful claims about the benefits realized with homeownership. These include:
- Improved mental and physical health: Studies show that homeowners and their children are generally happier and healthier than renters. Many factors play a part, such as a strengthened sense of privacy. People also feel more secure knowing that a landlord cannot ask you to move or demand a significantly higher monthly rent payment.
- More engagement within your community: Homeownership gives you a chance to put down roots within your new neighborhood and town. You can build strong relationships with new friends and neighbors, teachers at the local schools, and shop keepers. You may also find more desire for volunteer opportunities. The support system you will build makes life easier and more pleasant.
- Higher educational achievement by your children: NAR studies show that children of homeowners are significantly more likely to achieve a higher level of education. An increase in their future earning potential follows. This holds true in both high income and low income neighborhoods.
These results may be due to a better sense of control and self-worth that homeowners enjoy versus renters. It’s human nature to yearn deeply to have our own turf. Although the results may be difficult to measure, the desire to own a home and to build a better future surely push people to want to want to achieve more. You and your family will have to discover the particular benefits that owning brings you. One fact is obvious: homeownership matters.