To rent or buy a house?

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Thankfully this question has not bugged me for quite some time. When I got pregnant and got married afterwards (yep, got knocked up first before getting married!), our first thought was to continue renting an apartment that we share with friends from college.

However, when I had an emergency section to deliver my baby, that plan just flew out of the window and all of a sudden, we’ve found ourselves (with a newborn!) nestled in an extra space (meant to be an office) owned by my in-laws. There was really no furniture except for some plastic tables, a very big modular table housing my in-laws’ entertainment showcase, a steel bench you would often see in banks, and another steel chair with foamed seats. It was very bare. Not even a hook where we can hang curtains to shield off sunlight. We’ve spent months just using blankets as curtains.

Anyway, back then, I felt pressured. I don’t know by whom: family or friends. Or was the pressure self-imposed? I mean, my friends were already paying the equity for their future homes so why shouldn’t we start too? Time is of the essence, we used to think. So we decided to check out a project by a known developer and thought to give it a go. There were a few concerns regarding the layout and location of the house (a little bit far from the city) but back then, all we ever wanted was to own a house. We complied the necessary documents and I asked my husband to visit the developer’s office to submit them. No down payment was needed and the first payment will automatically be considered as payment for the equity. My husband, my very good husband, didn’t bring cash with him so in short, we weren’t able to reserve a slot during his visit. He didn’t come back immediately and when we discussed it days later, we probably thought of it as a sign that maybe it wasn’t for us.

True enough, our circumstances changed, especially with my husband’s diagnosis, and we definitely couldn’t have kept up with the monthly amortization and would have ended giving the unit up without any refund. We wouldn’t have paid a chunk of our debts and have not bought some furnishings for our house, and would have continued sitting on steel office chairs!

So for others out there who might be asking themselves the same question, don’t be pressured if you’re still renting or living with your parents or in-laws. Buying a house is not something to be done in haste. It is something that needs thorough thinking and consider the cash flow first before committing to any contract to avoid future losses (and headaches). In God’s time, I know we’ll have our own house. Pero unta dili maabot ug 15 years. Hahaha!

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