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Pros & Cons of Renting vs. Buying a Home in New York City

If you’re moving to New York City, you’re probably trying to decide if it’s better to buy a home or rent one. Here are the pros and cons of renting versus buying in NYC.

If you just landed a great job in New York City, the top issue on your mind now is probably what you’re going to do for housing. In New York City, you have the option to buy a home, townhouse or condominium, or to rent an apartment. And that’s going to become your central question as you plan your move: should you rent or buy? 

In many cities across the United States, buying is usually a better deal than renting. In NYC, though, that decision is really going to depend on more factors, from your finances to your lifestyle choices. Let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of becoming either a renter or buyer once you move to the Big Apple.

What Are Some Benefits of Renting in NYC?

New York City is among the most expensive cities in the world for real estate. While the median price for a home in the United States is around $214,000, in Manhattan it’s over $1.3 million. The concept of the “starter home” doesn’t apply here.

However, NYC has five boroughs, and prices vary quite a bit outside of Manhattan. There are up-and-coming neighborhoods that are becoming more popular — and more competitive for the best homes available. But the same is true for the rental market as well. Across the five boroughs, there are options for you to explore, so much of your decision making will focus on issues such as how far you want to be from your job, whether you want to be close to cultural attractions, and so on.

One big advantage of renting is you won’t need to worry about maintenance or upkeep costs, or paying the city’s high property and real estate taxes. There are a lot of additional costs that go into buying a home, some of them unexpected, while tenants have the convenience of calling their super to fix something. 

Unlike owning a home, you have more flexibility as a renter. While you’re almost certainly going to sign a lease for your unit, you still have the option to move if you decide to, rather than worrying about selling your home, townhouse, or condo before you leave. 

What Are Good Reasons to Buy a Home in NYC?

Right now, the U.S. has very low mortgage rates, which can help make buying a home an attractive option. 

While Manhattan is quite expensive for home buyers, housing in the outer boroughs is cheaper. You can also take advantage of tax benefits, like deductions, on your real estate taxes and mortgage. Those savings can add up substantially over time.

Even more importantly, unlike renting, you can build equity in your home. Your home becomes your long-term investment, giving you the ability over the long term to see your property rise in value, and with it the ability to one day sell at a handsome profit. In a city like New York, real estate is likely to be a solid investment. You also have the ability to target properties like the city’s famous brownstones that have one or more rental units attached, which allows you to earn rental property that helps reduce the cost of your mortgage.

The bottom line is there’s no universal answer that fits everyone’s situation, so the decision is up to you, and there are benefits and challenges to either one. You can also use a rent-or-buy calculator, like the one provided by the National Association of Realtors, to determine which option is more cost-effective for the neighborhoods you’re targeting in New York City. 

Either way, if you move into a home or an apartment and find that everything you own isn’t going to fit into your new location, it isn’t necessary to downsize or set up a big yard sale. You have the option of renting a storage unit from a company like Treasure Island Storage, which has facilities across the city where you can rent a unit on a month to month basis. The units at TI Storage come in different sizes, so you have options for meeting your needs. 

Store Your Belongings With the Experts at TI Storage in NYC

You’re getting a terrific value when you store your belongings at TI Storage. With convenient locations in New York and New Jersey, TI Storage is guaranteed to be the top choice for self-storage near you. Simply locate the Treasure Island Storage in your neighborhood and stop by. Our team of storage solution associates will show you around and help you reserve the unit you need. Contact us today!

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