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CityPress - - Opportunity Index - YVONNE GRIM­BEEK projects@city­press.co.za side­bar) will be yours. is a forced sav­ing. will prob­a­bly get a bet­ter home. more va­ri­ety to choose from. sense of be­long­ing and com­mu­nity. and se­cu­rity. see

ost South Africans will make two mas­sive in­vest­ments in their life­time. One is buy­ing a house and the other is pay­ing for their chil­dren’s ed­u­ca­tion.

Both cost a lot of money, but they are also the two smartest in­vest­ments you are likely to make.

Over the next 10 weeks, we will take a long, hard look at one of these in­vest­ments: buy­ing and own­ing your own home. We have a panel of ex­perts (

who will take you through the en­tire process from plan­ning to look­ing around, to ap­ply­ing for a bond and man­ag­ing it.

Just in case you are not sure about tak­ing that big step to­wards own­ing your own home, here are 13 great rea­sons be­ing a prop­erty owner is an ad­van­tage:

You can ren­o­vate the kitchen and bath­rooms, paint them pink if you like, but not if you’re in a com­plex. If that is the case, you will have to abide by the rules of the body cor­po­rate, but the in­te­rior is yours to do with as you please and when you please.

You are obliged to pay the monthly in­stal­ment and it goes to­wards your prop­erty. It is a long-term in­vest­ment and al­lows you to build an eq­uity own­er­ship in­ter­est in your house.

The good prop­er­ties will sell quickly if priced right. You are likely to rent prop­er­ties that are more dated and not as well main­tained. The land­lord will not nec­es­sar­ily in­vest in top-end fin­ishes to the taste of the ten­ant. It is hard to find well-main­tained homes in rental stock. When buy­ing, you can up­date to your taste and make it “a home”.

prop­er­ties are lim­ited in some ar­eas.

Rental

When you live in the same neigh­bour­hood for a long time, you get to know the peo­ple, form friend­ships and par­tic­i­pate in com­mu­nity ac­tiv­i­ties. As your fam­ily grows and your chil­dren go to school, this com­mu­nity might be­come more im­por­tant as it is likely chil­dren from your neigh­bour­hood will go to the same schools.

If you do not over­com­mit and buy sen­si­bly (and your fi­nan­cial po­si­tion does not change), you have cer­tainty about a roof over your head. With rentals, the land­lord can de­cide to sell at any time and you will have to move. This can be a costly and dis­rup­tive ex­er­cise.

You do not have to worry about the land­lord check­ing up on you or send­ing the rental agent for fre­quent in­spec­tions. You also might not have to worry about the “per­son next door” phon­ing the land­lord if you play loud mu­sic once in a blue moon.

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