Thoughts on Going from Owning to Renting a Home

It's been four months since we packed up our very first purchased home, put everything we owned in two cars, and drove across the country to Utah. It seems a little unreal to be honest. This move, while hasn't been perfect, has definitely gone a lot smoother than many of our other moves, and for that I'm grateful. 


I had a strange experience a couple weeks ago when I saw a picture from our old house, and it almost felt like that version of our life was a lifetime ago. It broke my heart that a reality from just four months ago had already begun to seem to foreign. I can't really remember what it was like to have Jay wander across the hall from his room into ours in the morning. Or the way I brought Em into the kitchen via my hip each morning and placed her in her lime green booster seat. Or the way my feet felt walking across the cold hardwood floors that we'd spent months installing in the kitchen. I loved that home, and we put everything we had into making it as perfect as we could, so it feels so disheartening to already feel like the life was so long ago, even though it truly wasn't. 

Now we're here in Utah, and the only thing that seems normal is the way life is lived right now. Em sleeps in the room next to Derek and I, and Jay is downstairs in the basement. No longer does he come into our room in the morning, but instead he either plays in the playroom, or more commonly, the upstairs living room. 

I worried moving into this home that we were going to feel bitter about deciding to rent versus owning our home. I worried that we were going to feel like we were making a step down in life. But it hasn't been like that at all. I've come to realize these last few months that sometimes you need to make a step down, so that you can rise up even better in the long run. 

While we could have purchased a home when we first moved here, it wouldn't have been a forever home. It likely would have been an older home, in need of a lot of repairs, and we knew we would eventually leave that home for something newer, and more custom for Em's life in the future. 

We decided that it wouldn't make sense to buy something, knowing we would pick up and leave it again. Our decision to rent has been such a blessing in our life. This season we're in of paying off debt and putting everything we have into that has been so rewarding. Each month when Derek and I sit down and pay off what we can from student loans (we've already paid off one of our cars a year early since being here!), and his truck, is a penny closer to our forever home, which we're really grateful for. 

A few weeks ago we sat down and calculated how much house we'd be able to afford once everything was paid off, and we'd be able to get double the amount of house we would have been able to get if we purchased now. So while it sometimes feels like we've made a step down, I have to remind myself that it isn't a step down, but a step in the right direction. I heard a quote a few months ago, "Live like no one else will for five years so you can live like no one else can for the rest of your life.", and that is certainly the motto going through our minds, and behind every decision we've been making lately, and it feels so good. 

1 comment

  1. Curious if the money you got from selling your old house went just towards your debt or are houses in the area you are in now way more expensive? There always benefits to everything, renting means no headaches of having to fix anything in the house, thats all on the owners shoulders, but it can be worrisome to knowing the house could go up on the market and be sold. When we got our 1st and only house, we looked at what we could afford and what we needed. Our house is only 752sq ft, and we managed to raise two children in it lOL (BOTH have moved out as they are adults now)

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