6 Reasons to Move Into a Home
By: Olive Dawson
Your home is your castle. You are the king or queen, and you make the rules. Becoming a first-time homeowner has benefits beyond bidding your landlord a fond farewell. Here are a half dozen reasons why having a home with your name on the title is a great move.
- Buying a home signals to neighbors that you’re putting down roots and joining the community. Pride in ownership can be contagious as neighbors seek to one-up each other in the quality of curb appeal. That healthy competition can actually raise the value of every home in the area with a collective aesthetic.
Getting to know your neighbors and relying on each other for favors in times of need creates a sense of belonging and security. Children in the community grow up together and can form friendships that follow them throughout their lives.
Plus, the property taxes you pay will help support things in your community that serves all who live there. We’re talking about fire and police protection, road maintenance and schools. When you buy a home, you have the opportunity to make your little piece of the world a better place.
- Tax Write-Off
Speaking of taxes, the interest rate on your mortgage can provide a nice tax deduction that may result in a tax refund you wouldn’t enjoy as a renter. Keep in mind, some new tax rules are in effect through 2025 that you should be aware of when filing for the first time as a homeowner.
- Greater Privacy
One of the intangible benefits of living in a home you own is a greater sense of privacy. When you rent, you may share a wall with other tenants, or have people living above or below you. (Sometimes it sounds like those upstairs neighbors have a pet elephant!) You may also have a nosey landlord who makes you feel like you’re under constant surveillance.
Professor Daniel Solove teaches tech privacy at George Washington University. He explains in his blog why privacy matters, “We need places of solitude to retreat to, places where we are free of the gaze of others in order to relax and feel at ease.” Solove goes on to say, “One of the hallmarks of freedom is having autonomy and control over our lives.” When you own your own place, you can feel free to be yourself. And that’s priceless.
- A Place for Pets
The majority of American households now includes at least one pet, and most pets like the room to roam. Often, rental properties do not allow pets because of the mess and damage they can create. Can you really blame them?
If you have your own home, you decide who gets to live with you. If you have a dog or three, a fenced in backyard creates an easy access space for play and exercise, because you don’t always feel like going to the dog park or taking a walk.
- Outdoor Living Space
When the weather is nice, what’s better than being able to sip your morning coffee outside and hear the birds sing? Or to fix dinner on the grill and eat outside on your patio set?
Fire pits and water features are popular backyard additions that can help you create an outdoor oasis, where you want to spend more of your free time enjoying natural light and breathing fresh air. Solar lights placed in key spots that energize during the day will provide interest in your yard after the sun goes down.
You also get the chance to landscape the way you would like. For the best results, look at plants that thrive in your particular climate. Living in a high and dry place like Phoenix, you may want to explore the native plants you see in nurseries and botanic gardens. These native plants don’t need much water or maintenance to thrive and make for easy gardening at home.
You also have the option to expand the patio, deck or add a pergola. After all, this is an investment in your property, much like your mortgage is an investment, unlike rent which you’ll never recoup.
- Easier Entertaining
When you have your own place, you can be the life of the party without having to leave your own living room! So host the next Super Bowl party, book club or playdate for your kids— the more the merrier! Throw a backyard barbecue. Have the extended family visit and stay with you for the holidays, organize a neighborhood progressive dinner or decorate for Halloween in a way that will have people talking for years to come. It’s your place— and there’s no place better to make some memories!
Olive Dawson is a gardening and landscape writer for WikiLawn Phoenix and environmentalist. She is always searching for new ways to reduce waste and grow food organically. She is most proud of her homemade beauty products.