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thread: what % of you income fortnightly is rent/mortgage?

  1. #91
    Lucy in the sky with diamonds.

    Jan 2005
    Funky Town, Vic
    7,070

    You gotta be kidding! It's still not that simple... I have an excellent rental history, always have. I have usually been on a pretty high wage too, and I always ask those sorts of questions of an agent. Not all landlords are professional investors and some properties are owned by companies etc.

    I have always improved the properties - especially the gardens for example, my references are first class. In all sorts of properties. It's not got to do with your 'skills' as a tenant, its also about the experience of the landlord.


  2. #92
    Registered User

    Jul 2005
    Rural NSW
    6,975

    We've rented several properties and I agree that what we have now is abnormally unrestricted...
    Yep, I know Bron. I was just up for a convo on why it is harder to make a rented place comfortable in Australia compared to other countries. I think most people know that renting lacks the freedoms of owning (although if you read the fine print very closely in a mortgage contract it actually says that you have to seek permission from the bank to make any significant alteration to the property that may change the value of said property... I read that in our last ANZ mortgage... so I guess that would mean that you legally should ask the bank before you pull down a shed or repaint?)

    Lulu: yep, I know it's not always easy to find a good rental... just sharing our experience... saying how we managed it. Just putting it out there that renting doesn't always have to be miserable.
    Last edited by Bathsheba; April 15th, 2009 at 04:21 PM.

  3. #93

    Mar 2004
    Sparta
    12,662

    Bath, I followed a slightly differant path to home ownership. I have no mortgage so if I want to pull down my garage and erect a pink rapunzel tower in its place all I need is council permision (and also from man of the house - just to be polite)

    ETA - it would never occur to me to think that renting is all misery. It can often be a much wiser choice than buying but for me personally owning a home has more emotional satisfaction than renting and when we make choices we need to consider the emotional ramifications/capital as well as the finacial implications.

  4. #94
    Registered User

    Jul 2005
    Rural NSW
    6,975

    Yep, we don't intend on ever having another mortgage if we can avoid it.... unless we only need a measly 20% of the value of the property for example... and ooooh I'd looove a Rapunzel Tower!!! LOL but yeah, aren't councils getting restrictive!!! My sis lives in the country and her stupid local council won't let you build with recycled materials!!! Stuff that! If I was to build a dream home it would be nearly all recycled materials! Recycled Bluestone... recycled slate roofing.... recycled timber floorboards etc etc etc. So if it's not a finicky owner these days it's a finicky council!!!

  5. #95
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Jun 2005
    Blue Mountains
    5,086

    Was just thinking about the emotion in the decision to rent or buy.. and I think my emotions sway me to want to rent in a town that I want my kids to grow up in, and they outweigh the emotions of having my own home. I can be a SAHM, we can afford to send DS to the lovely local preschool, pay for music lessons.. whereas if we locked ourselves into a mortgage around here, I'd have to go back to work.. there'd be childcare fees, and probably no extra for other activities. For sure if a mortgage worked out to be the same as rent, we'd probably jump in, but in this area that's not going to happen, and I'm not going back to work just for more material stuff. ETA: hmm.. just realised that doesn't really make sense.. coz we actually have more disposable income this way, so can actually afford more material things now! lol.

    We have always planted gardens & things in rentals too.. and there are so many ways to establish a 'mobile' garden anyway.. so renting doesn't mean the kids miss out on a vege patch.

    I've no doubt we'll own our own place one day, we just don't feel the need nor the pressure to do so at the moment. And as I said, renting in this area does work out cheaper, unless we bought a really old small house a few suburbs up the road.

    As for decorating a nursery... that's easily done in a rental too. There are removable hooks for pictures.. there are removable stickers & borders, you can still put rugs & blankets around, you can hang your own curtains. We did it a bit for DS's room, but it turned out the babies end up in our room anyway! hehe. I'm glad I didn't spend time & money painting & decorating! I'm sure the kids don't resent me not having a themed nursery for them haha.

    As for being good tenants and finding a good landlord.. i can see the logic in it, but around here the rental market is pretty vicious. We only got this place coz we offered to pay more rent. I guess I should be worried that if the owners want the place back (I'm hoping not.. they have a young family and moved to perth - I'm hoping they are nicely settled over there! LOL) it will be tough finding a place here at a reasonable rental price. I've heard others who rent through our RE agent have been helped by the RE by being offered available properties before they're advertised.. so hopefully being the good tenants we are that the real estate will help us find something. We do minor repairs ourself usually.. we replaced the screen door handle that broke.. DH's dad is hounding us to get the money back from the landlord ($50) ..but we broke it, we replaced it and gave them the new keys.. why hound them for money and be an annoying tenant?? I don't care if it's within our rights coz it was an old door and these things break.

  6. #96
    Registered User

    Jul 2005
    Rural NSW
    6,975

    Ha! When this place was advertised for rent there was a price range! LOL We thought that was very weird and asked the RA why... it was a $40 range too! And the agent said that the owner would accept less rent from a family who promises to maintain the gardens at their cost (they had been paying for a gardener with the last tenant and the gardener was charging a fortune and not doing a very good job)... and the owner DIDN'T want a group of students moving in (but if they were the only applicant then they would have to pay more)... so we said we would do the gardens and pay less. How weird was that! But it worked for us! And yep... if we ever have to move out we'll be stuffed finding another property as good as this for what we pay... but then again it might prompt us to move interstate who knows... our roots aren't that deep here... we were also considering doing the expat thing with DH's job... so renting offered us more flexibility if we decided to take that path as well.

    LIZ: oh and I totally agree with paying for small repairs yourself... it's a good investment we find that our owners are more likely to do the bigger more expensive nice-to-have jobs if we keep paying for the smaller stuff.

  7. #97
    Registered User

    Jan 2008
    3,305

    bathsheba ive had that before too they wanted an extra 20 a fortnight for mowing and is aid we would do it.

    In another property i was at the owner used to maintain all gardens great when i was a single mom

  8. #98
    Lucy in the sky with diamonds.

    Jan 2005
    Funky Town, Vic
    7,070

    It can be a stupid minefield whichever way you go . I can't tell you how shirty I got with EVERY single RE agent I dealt with when I have bought a house...

    It just never failed to amaze me how crappy some landlords are. I know there are some great ones (some of my friends for eg.), but I think the majority have also bought into the "renters will pay your mortgage" thing because they seem to believe they have no other responsibility other than to collect rent.
    I had places the LL would move like a snail to fix the heating in winter - I can't tell you the amount of family homes out for rent, but they had a problem with children.

    Wouldn't it make more sense to build some sort of mutual relationship with the tenants of your investment - allow them to feel at home more (even to the point of installing a new kitchen!) so they will treat the place well and stay there?
    I know there are people that treat places like crap....but maybe they wouldn't if they felt they had some sort of investment in the home? (not according to those on ACA though )

    A long time ago the rent market was waaay different. There wasn't 800 people going for the same place and LL's were more concerned with keeping people in the place. Glad I'm not there anymore - anyway it pushed me to buy here and now the kids are in kinder (100 metres down the road) and will start school next year (200 metres around the corner), I never have to deal with LL's and RE agents again. WOO HOO!

  9. #99
    Registered User

    Nov 2006
    Western Sydney
    1,109

    Thanks for the formula Cai - I just worked out that our rent is 22% of our net wage.

    I wrote long and loud about the ridiculousness of trying to find a rental property for a decent price in Sydney a few years ago when we were looking for this place, and again when they hiked up the price by $50 a week at the end of last year - because they could. I hate that feeling that they have us over a barrel.

    We spent weeks and weeks trying to find this place - there was no way to ask clever questions about the landlord as we had 22 couples all lining up behind us to get into a house. If we weren't chosen, somebody else would have happily paid.

    There are a number of forks that have lead us to this rental path. Its not a situation that I would have chosen. I truly believed we would have our own house by now.

    Our issues all stem from trying to pursue having a family. Everything else comes second, until it either happens or I hit the age where we say 'enough, no more.'

  10. #100
    Registered User

    Dec 2006
    In my own private paradise
    15,272

    there's not doubt you can do simple changes in a rental property to make it feel more homely. for me, that isn't what we wanted to do - our changes have been pretty drastic. we've gone from having a yard that was completely grass front and back with a few azaleas and a whopping great ugly gas bottle in the front yard. no fencing, nothing. our front yard now has no grass at all - it's become a feature garden with 100plus roses, two water features, a smaller (well hidden) gas bottle etc. we're part way through putting a fence and arbor around that yard. we've lifted the height of the carport but about a foot (and put a proper slant on it, wasn't done right in the first place. we're replacing a "standard" single car garage with a larger 2 car garage with additional storage area. we've planted approx 20 fruit trees in the back yard, built 3 permanent vegie gardens (with another three going in this year). we've pulled out some horrific trees etc, and still making changes as we go. each of these changes (cutting down dangerous trees etc) would have to be negotiated with a land lord. without a really good looooooooooooooooooong term lease, you couldn't justify the fruit trees etc. we're slowly painting the entire house and looking at changing the internals to make it more space friendly around laundry and primary bath - not stuff you can do in a rental.

    we're not doing a "theme" per se in the nursery - we've just added color that we wouldn't be able to add in a rental etc.

    it really does come down to your personal priorities and financial situation - for us, this is the most viable way at the moment - the freedom it gives us to personalise just makes it a hell of a lot better for us!

  11. #101
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Jun 2005
    Blue Mountains
    5,086

    Yep it is personal choice. We have a lemon tree here and I hate it (citrus beetles that won't go away!).. had fruit trees at mums and they were a lot of work. So fruit trees aren't a concern for us LOL.

  12. #102
    Registered User

    Dec 2006
    In my own private paradise
    15,272

    ahhh the advantages of country vic - no fruit fly, no citrus beetles - and cos we're not far from spud growing country, we have the most fertile soil! it's awesome!

  13. #103

    Oct 2005
    A Nestle Free Zone... What about YOU?
    5,374

    Mmm interesting. I am with you on the Rapunzel tower Brontide!

    I was an exemplary tenant and I had some damn awful landlords - oh my don't get me started....

    I don't think it has to be an either or as some have put it. I think you can have a mortgage and be a SAHM. It does come down to choice. If you want the satisfaction and security of owning a home sometimes there are sacrifices. If you want to live in a particular suburb and you won't budge - maybe you have to rent.

    If rent = mortgage then the long term benefits I think will outweigh the tie of a mortgage. I know many a friend who purchased where they didn't really want to live - in time as values rise they are able to afford to purchase closer to where they would LOVE to live. It's about choice.

    I love that I can paint my house purple and not have to ask anyone - that I have enforced savings and an asset that one day can go to my children.

    I like that my kids heights are on the doorway too as someone else said.

    It's about choice. I am with Brontide in that the emotion is as important personally as the solid financial decision.

  14. #104
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Jun 2005
    Blue Mountains
    5,086

    hehe you're lucky with no citrus beetles. They STINK!

    As for choice.. I think the point of this turn in discussion was to help those that feel stuck renting not to feel so bad about their 'lot' in life. That renting can have it's advantages too and that some are actually choosing to rent for various reasons. That you don't have to stress that you don't have a mortgage, and aren't necessarily building the 'australian dream'. The dream doesn't have to be about the house, just coz previous generations were in a position to do it. I'm sure the intention wasn't to make mortgage owners feel they need to defend their choices. Just pointing out some advantages and good sides to renting.

    I think everyone deep down wants to own their own house.. I do too.. we just choose not to go into massive debt for it. It's a financial decision as well as emotional. My children's inheritance will hopefully be more than just money & assets.

  15. #105

    Mar 2004
    Sparta
    12,662

    If rent = mortgage then the long term benefits I think will outweigh the tie of a mortgage.
    Is a mortgage really a tie? It seems to have a public image as being one but my brother has a mortgage on a house in Brissy and he has been living and working OS for the last 6 years. Rather than being a tie it has given him freedom - he has been able to travel while a renter pays his mortgage off for him. Anytime he wants he can come back to it and resume possession. Once you reach the point where your home is paid off then you can rent it out and it will generate income for you while you travel.
    If you really want to fling it off in a more extreme way then you can just sell your house.
    I don't think that renting does give you more freedom.

  16. #106
    Registered User

    Jul 2008
    Brisbane
    592

    Really interesting discussion ladies. We were renting in Melbourne with the intention to buy a home last year. After much research and looking around, we decided to move up to Brisbane where property is cheaper and we could still live relatively close to the CBD for DH's work.

    We made the move primarily because owning our home was a very important to us and we had no intention of over extending oursleves financially in order to live in a (relatively) expensive city. Anyway, that is just a back ground to my question regarding retirement:

    Whilst I absolutely understand the rationale behind renting and saving money as opposed to living in an inadequate environment and the risks involved in mortgages in recent times, I think in the long term there may be greater challenges facing renters. For those long term renters, what are your future intentions in terms of retirment etc. Wouldn't renting prove quite difficult if neither parties have a steady income / are on a pension and who knows what will happen to property prices and the possible associated rental increases?

    Just to clarify, the reason I am asking is that it was largely on our future plans / retirement etc. that we based our decision to buy. I would just like to hear some other views on this reasoning.

    Sorry, a bit off topic

  17. #107
    Registered User

    Jan 2009
    5,235

    Personally I love knowing that the money I am paying out will result in me owning a very large asset in a couple of years time.

  18. #108
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Jun 2005
    Blue Mountains
    5,086

    Sambo - our intention is to own a house eventually, with as little mortgage hanging over our heads as possible. The reason a mortgage scares us is we have only one main source of income at the moment, and we don't want to enter into a huge debt unless we have more than one that doesn't involve me having to go back to work, kids in care etc.. if that makes sense. If DH lost his job.. we'd be stuck, well & truly. That to me is not security. If we have other sources of income.. from other investments etc.. then if DH lost his job.. we'd still have money coming in.

    I don't consider rent money as dead money, as it provides a roof over our heads, and that's all that's important for us. I know of a few reposessed houses.. I'd rather walk away from a rental in hard times than my own house.

    So we would actually be more inclined to enter the market by buying an investment property first.. something smaller than what we would need.. as i have said before, in this area, it's cheaper to rent a house this size than to buy. So an affordable mortgage, which yes, tenants would pay for. It's hard to find positively geared properties though.

    Brontide - a mortgage doesn't have to be a tie.. but in a lot of cases I think it is.. people are slaves to their mortgages for many many years. If we can get in a position where a mortgage isn't a tie.. then we'd go for it, such as if the mortgage equated to the rent we are currently paying. But as it is, for us, we do have roots here, our village is here, it's a nice place for kids to grow up, and rent is cheap enough for us to stay here, so we rent. If rent became THAT unaffordable here, then I guess we would uproot and go somewhere affordable, but the stability of friends & family here, and the lifestyle we can have outweighs our want of entering the market just yet, as it would mean moving away or me going back to work.

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