Since April I have been living in a lovely apartment with what feels like twice the space (moving from 750 sq. ft. to 1050 sq. ft.), with more windows (only 1 more, to be honest--but better views, more light because not backed up on building), more green space (LOTS more green space, trees, grounds), a back porch/patio, and more quiet. It feels more open, more peaceful, more homelike.
I have rented since I was 21 and moved to NYC. Through grad schools--two degrees, two schools--and here in DFW. Even now, in what is really a boom market in Dallas for buying, I rent.
Every few years I yearn to buy a house. I look, I price, I think... but I don't.
1. I like the flexibility and freedom of renting. If the apartment gets too small/too expensive/too loud or the landlord gets too fussy/a crack habit/guns/too present or too absent, I can go. Moving is a pain, but the landlord who lives two doors away with a coke habit and handguns is no joke.
2. The plumbing is someone else's problem. Ditto landscaping, insurance, termites, and taxes.
3. "Fixer-Upper" is what I can afford in terms of price but not time... so there we are. I'm not buying to flip, I'm buying to nest.
4. I don't want to retire in DFW. But I'm thinking about retirement homes now, as vacation homes/rental properties, etc.
2012 will become the year of researching where I will build this house:
When I know where, I can plan when.
What the future location must have:
- access to major airport for ease of travel
- access to decent medical facilities (just in case!)
- no freezing winters, no muggy/100+ summers
- seasons: 4, not 2
- bookstores, restaurants, museums, theatre/performance venues (or university with same) within reason (4 places I spend my time)
- view of mountains or ocean... or both? + trees
- no extreme weather: hurricanes. tornedos, blizzards, droughts