The rental prices of homes and apartments in Trinidad & Tobago are decreasing!
One common question our agents get asked is, “is it advisable to be ‘leaving gain interest’ and saving towards a down payment?”
Out of instinct I would say if you can’t afford to buy a property and add equity to your wealth, then YES; you should rent in the meantime until you can. Not everyone can afford to put out a couple million for a top tier home in a high-value neighborhood. So instead, here’s some insight on what you can do to take advantage of these dropping rent prices in the meantime:
One advantage you can have as a renter over a homeowner is that you have little to no maintenance costs. When you rent a property, your landlord is responsible for upkeep and repair. For example, if appliances stop working or your roof starts leaking, you don’t bear the cost of fixing it. Rental contracts almost always state that the landlord is financially responsible for fixing these issues in a timely manner to avoid any discomfort on your part.
Do you have any questions about a rental/rental contract you’re looking at? Send us a quick email with your contact info and an agent will promptly contact you!
Another financial advantage to renting rather than buying is access to amenities that would otherwise be an enormous expense for a homeowner. A very common one nowadays is an in-ground pool. These are becoming more and more standard with many mid-range to high-end developments with no extra charge to tenants. If you’re a homeowner and want this amenity, you can expect to pay tens of thousands for installation; and then there’s the maintenance.
Probably the biggest advantage renters have over buyers is upon the signing of the deal. If you’re purchasing a house on a mortgage, most lenders require you to have at least 20% as a down payment. The average 3 bed, 2 bath home in T&T costs roughly $3,000,000; and not everyone’s got $600,000 (20%) lying around ready to give away!
However, as a renter you do not have such a huge obligation to fulfill. Most rental contracts require you to have the total of two months’ rent (one as a security deposit and the other as the first month’s rent). Plus you have the ease of knowing exactly how much to budget every month as your rent price is fixed. The average 3 bed, 2 bath apartment rental costs around $10,000 monthly. So which is really easier on your wallet, $600k or $20k?
In every real estate market, property values go up and down. While this may affect owners positively and negatively, it affects renters significantly less (if at all). As a renter you have the flexibility to downsize or up-size as the market shifts up or down or your income goes up or down.