Author Topic: High Rent vs Commute  (Read 2982 times)

btothec

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 4
High Rent vs Commute
« on: August 11, 2016, 10:55:32 AM »
I know people have asked this question before but I figure this is the best place to ask this question.

We live in a Seattle suburb (Burien) and my husband and I both commute to work- he works downtown 5 days a week and I work 3 days during the week and wait tables at night. My husband takes the bus to work most of the time but his commute can be challenging, while mine is miserable. I am so tired of driving!

My daughter also goes to a preschool near my work because I am able to get her quickly if need be. I love my job and have growth there.

We make about 150K gross. We have no debt. We own our home and our mortgage is around $1700 including taxes.

We are seriously considering renting our house out for $2300 and using the extra money to rent a place within light rail distance to work and walking distance from our daughter's school. We found an apartment for $3000. Seattle prices are insane right now but this place is within walking distance or light rail distance from everything. We could easily sell one car and lower a good chunk of expenses. 

Is it insane in any world to spend that much money on rent? We would obviously offset the cost with rent money but does this seem like a house of cards? I am so ready to never drive!

undercover

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 961
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2016, 11:19:44 AM »
This sounds like a subjective decision. Your house is not going to make a good rental and you're about to increase your housing costs by $700. Then again, it doesn't make sense to sell it if you're just going to end back up there in 5 years anyway. So, it just depends on truly how much you hate the commute. Is a better commute worth delaying FIRE?

The largest argument in the live close to where you work is the value of your time. MMM assumes we will all use our time to the fullest and earn $25/hr during the time saved. Realistically, this isn't always possible. That said, I think the quality of life improvement could be worth it alone. I would never take a job with a commute I hated.

Bit of conflicting information I just gave you but hopefully it's some food for thought.

frugaliknowit

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1684
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2016, 11:27:48 AM »
Renting your house out for $2300 for you to rent for $3000 is nuts.  Yes, it would be a house of cards.

If you want a shorter commute, dump the house.

honeybbq

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1324
  • Location: Seattle
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2016, 11:51:57 AM »
I have no suggestions, but I live in Seattle and work downtown... and I feel you. Any chance you could buy a fixer upper closer to downtown - maybe Seward park area?

btothec

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 4
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #4 on: August 11, 2016, 12:33:52 PM »
We have about 130K in equity in our house and could sell tomorrow if I needed to, but the market is continuing to go up here. I want to get another year or two in equity built up. But maybe I should seriously consider selling. My brother would rent the house from us. We would still be able to save around 35% a month even with the increase in rent.

This is all really helpful- thank you!

btothec

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 4
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2016, 12:39:34 PM »
Also- I could rent my house for closer to 3K a month but was trying to help my brother out. Maybe I should rethink that to!

kitkat

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 86
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #6 on: August 11, 2016, 12:48:28 PM »
I would suggest running some more detailed numbers to help with your decision. How much $ will you save on insurance/interest/depreciation if you sell a car? How much are you spending a month on gas, and how much of that will be cancelled out by light rail passes? In the end you may find that you are "losing" much less than $700/mo to be much, much happier. I can be a bit of a worrier at times, so I like the idea of keeping the house as it gives you the option to move back in a year or two if needed/desired.

Also, if you haven't already discussed a price point with your brother, I would suggest renting to him much closer to market value. Does he actually need (and want) the 'help'? Or do you just feel weird like you are profiting off of him? (You aren't, but I could see myself feeling that way)

humbleMouse

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 301
  • Location: Minneapolis
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2016, 12:50:24 PM »
Also- I could rent my house for closer to 3K a month but was trying to help my brother out. Maybe I should rethink that to!

Are you trying to maximize your assets for the best lifestyle, or are you trying to subsidize your brother's life?

Sounds like you need to get your priorities straight before analyzing financial costs.

btothec

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 4
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #8 on: August 11, 2016, 12:57:59 PM »
Thank you Humblemouse. I'm going to start prioritizing right now. Thanks for setting me straight buddy.

bye-bye Ms. FancyPants

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 119
  • Location: Louisville, Ky
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #9 on: August 11, 2016, 01:54:51 PM »
Thank you Humblemouse. I'm going to start prioritizing right now. Thanks for setting me straight buddy.

heheh, I always love helpful advice such as this!

cawiau

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 76
Re: High Rent vs Commute
« Reply #10 on: August 16, 2016, 08:42:47 PM »
We went with the high mortgage for shorter commute (DC)


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk