No matter how many stories I read about housing price bubbles and rising interest rates, there’s no way I would go back to renting, and most Canadians feel the same way.
For three long, miserable years, my husband and I rented a unit attached to our landlord’s sprawling house in northeastern Toronto. Every time the landlord lit a cigarette, the stench filled our apartment. Every time we took a shower, someone would flush a toilet and scald us. The owner kept two cats but didn’t allow us to have pets, so the mice that infested the place took refuge on our side of the house.
Perhaps the worst part was knowing that our monthly rent cheque was paying off our landlord’s mortgage. As soon as we had a down payment saved up for our own house, we moved out and never looked back.
For people like me, no amount of facts, figures or common sense can sully the home ownership dream. A recent survey by Genworth Financial indicates that 92% of Canadians, both homeowners and non-owners alike, would rather own than rent and feel there are benefits to homeownership that go beyond financial value, including a greater sense of well-being and security. Of the 1,500 people surveyed, 40% own a home with a mortgage, 29% have paid off their home, 26% rent and 6% don’t own their home, but don’t pay rent.
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