Would You Rather?

Would you rather rent or own your NYC apartment?

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New York City is an anomaly in that, among other things, renters way outnumbers owners. But what if tenants and homeowners had a choice? Whether 'tis nobler to own or rent, that is the question we asked six New Yorkers this week.

  • Own I have rented in the past and now, I’m a homeowner. Home owning is a very big step for me, but I love it. I see as an investment of my hard-earned money. And now I can do as I please without neighbors calling the cops when I want to play my music at high levels.  -Theresa, Tribeca
  • Own While the rates are low, own.  It’s a real investment. You can always rent your apartment out for income or even if you just need to cover costs. -Sarah, Upper West Side
  • Own Real estate is a superior place to “park my money” for the long term. I feel very secure knowing that I will not be subjected to having to move based on a landlord’s whim or needs.  And that my monthly finances for the future are set. Yes, maintenance and taxes rise, but I budget for that. And I like the fact that I can make changes to suit my needs. -Alicia, Upper West Side
  • Rent I rent now, and I have a family.  I like the way the landlord has to take care of everything and I don’t have to pretend to like tinkering around the house. I know all the arguments for “investing”--but I invested in my own business instead and I make a good living from it. I’m not worried about "leaving something behind" for my kids -- what makes them entitled to a house? As long as I can afford a good education for them, I’m fine with that. -Rick, Brooklyn
  • Rent When our rental was converted to a co-op decades ago, I chose not to buy. But I’m rent controlled. I have the benefits of being a tenant, without having to pay the maintenance fees. Those have gone up for my neighbors over the years--by a lot. But repairs to the building, oil prices, repairs to the roof--none of that’s my concern.
    -Sondra, Harlem
  • Own I would love the security of owning my own apartment, and I like being able to change and improve my space as I like--that’s very important to me. My parents ingrained in me that ownership is the only way towards security and building family and wealth. That’s what I’m working towards! -Stephanie, Inwood

Verdict: Own - 4, Rent - 2

Winner: Own!

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