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Rental lifestyle on the rise?

Posted by Scott Van Voorhis October 31, 2012 06:56 AM

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If you'd rather rent forever and skip buying a home, you are not alone.

Just about a quarter of renters surveyed by ApartmentList.com say they plan to rent for the rest of their lives. A larger number, 37 percent, contend that homeownership is overrated and is not an important life goal for them.

In fact, this embrace of apartment living comes even as rents rocket into the stratosphere.

Massachusetts is one of a trio of state's that has seen the largest rent increases over the past 18 months, topping 23 percent, according to ApartmentList's "Rentonomics" report.

Only North Dakota (32.9 percent) and New York (24.8 percent) saw bigger increases. The national average is 10 percent.

In fact, roughly a third of the 1,043 renters who responded to the survey said they had their rent hiked over the past year, while an even larger number, 44 percent, expect to see their rent increased over the coming year.

"The fact that a quarter of renters plan to never own a home indicates to us that the definition of the American Dream is changing. One third of renters have had their rent raised in a tough economic climate," said John Kobs, chief executive and co-founder of Apartment List, in a press statement. "While the resale market slowly recovers, it seems that more Americans are embracing renting for the long term."

There is clearly a lifestyle that goes with owning a home. But is there a comparable rental lifestyle that's worth paying up for, even when rents are heading up? Or is this all about dollars and cents and figuring out what's the best fit for your finances?

Are you a committed renter?

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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About boston real estate now
Scott Van Voorhis is a freelance writer who specializes in real estate and business issues.

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