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Homeownership is Bad for Kids

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Can't afford your own home? You're lucky.

As the housing market continues to crumble, many people have already lost their homes. Others are finding it harder to meet the more stringent loan requirements to buy one. For those families longing for the American Dream of homeownership, the future might seem bleak. Actually, owning a home isn't all it's cracked up to be -- especially if you have kids. There are some real advantages for kids growing up in apartments:

Home Sweet Home Depot
New home owners are rarely enjoying their home -- they spend most weekends trolling the aisles of home improvement stores (which does not count as quality family time!) and making renovations and repairs.  When you live in an apartment, you have more free time to do fun activities with your kids that don't involve pvc pipe and drywall.

The Long Road Home

First-time homeowners usually can't afford a home that's close to major business centers. In order to make the money to pay the mortgage they must endure longer commutes. Long commutes equal less time with the family. Another repercussion of a long drive to work: less sleep. And as we all know an exhausted parent is a less effective parent.

Who Are the People in Your Neighborhood?
No one knows. You never get to meet them. Parents these days are so paranoid of predators most kids aren't allowed to play in the front yard or on the street so they're stuck in the backyard by themselves. The only kids getting any social interaction live in apartments because their parents don't have the option of hiding them in backyards.

Picket Fenced In
When people own their own home, they tend to stay put. Apartment dwellers are much more apt to get out and explore parks, playgrounds, beaches and museums.  Exposing your child to new experiences and people beats never leaving your house. Here's the rule: Own a home, get a backyard. Live in an apartment, the world is your backyard.
It Takes an Apartment Complex
When you share common walls, you share common concerns or at the very least you can commiserate about how sh*tty the landlord is.  But most of all, having people in close proximity, sharing common areas, brings you closer.  And in a pinch they can easily watch your kids while you get a couple chores done.  You can't choose your family but you can choose your "apartment family" -- and often they make better babysitters.

next: Dad Lessons from Clay Aiken
12 comments so far | Post a comment now
Kate September 29, 2008, 8:44 AM

I have to be honest here. I know that momlogic is trying to make it sound bearable - or even better - to live in an apartment, but I love my house, and I thank the good Lord that I didn’t buy bigger than I could afford, even though the mortgage lender would have let me. I was soooo ready to get out of my apartment for many reasons - 1) a drug dealer who threw huge parties lived right below me, 2) there were always issues with parking, 3) there were always annoying kids playing in the parking lot and near the dumpsters, 4) the lease office was ridiculous to deal with, 5)my neighbors were incredibly nosy. I could go on and on. The truth is, living in a home is way better. There’s more privacy. The space is mine to do with it what I please. It’s MUCH more quiet, and if my baby cries at night, I don’t have to fear a complaint to a landlord. And the big one… I’m not throwing my money away on RENT!

Anonymous September 29, 2008, 10:06 AM

Exactly. It’s nice to validate the option/neccessity to live in an apartment. But let’s not go as far as saying that owning a home is bad for kids. Get real.

Charli September 29, 2008, 10:16 AM

I have to say this…My neighborhood has all the kids playing outside and down the street. Everyday. So I don’t know where the person that wrote this lives…but here we don’t hide our kids. We all sit in our driveways watching our kids play with one another. We don’t hide them from the world.

Anonymous September 29, 2008, 10:45 AM

apartments are for losers

Anonymous September 29, 2008, 10:49 AM

I’m sorry but I hated living in my apt! Too noisy, not enough grass, no outdoor space for my little one, too cramped. I love my house and wouldn’t trade it for the world

Anonymous September 29, 2008, 1:02 PM

How wonderful for many of you that own your homes and have an idyllic life for your children. But, apartment life can be much like this article, because it is exactly that for me and my two children. My neighbors are great people and we all have school aged children. In fact, they are often in classes together. And yes, we do help each other out and celebrate our kids birthdays together. Community is what you make of your home and those around you, not the number on the door.
Apartments are not for losers, they are for families.

Anonymous September 29, 2008, 1:47 PM

What a crock this is. Whoever wrote this, must be the president of the Apartment Owners of America. As far as keeping things maintained, it’s good for kids to learn that there are responsibilities for the JOY of home ownership. We lease lots of land for our business, and the greatest frustration is that when you don’t own something you cannot afford to fix it up the way you want it, just to leave your money and improvements behind for the owner to benefit from. I pity apartment kids who don’t have a yard of their own, many times moving constantly and having to leave friends behind and start all over again, and many times don’t even get to have pets. Talk about being deprived!! Not only are pets wonderful for children, it has been found that those raised without pets tend to have higher incidences of allergies, asthma, irritable bowel syndrome, etc.
Kids in homes have friends over all the time and are just as capable of going to the park, swimming, etc. as those in apartments.
I don’t know who dreamed this one up, but I guess there will always be those who don’t want to have to do any physical labor, or want to have others take care of everything for you.
Home ownership gives you more ties to a community, usually makes someone more “invested” in the good of the community, more willing to get involved in the betterment of it.

Anonymous September 29, 2008, 3:43 PM

We live in a 2 bedroom apartment for 4 people. Granted that 2 of those people are little but come with a lot of stuff. I can not WAIT to have my own home. I will be able to paint and do whatever I want! Yeah, I am in total agreement with everyone else on this one! Houses are best. Soon it will be my turn!

Jodi September 29, 2008, 5:32 PM

It’s stupid articles like this that make me wonder why I even bother looking at this website. Give me a break.

Susan J. Tranner September 29, 2008, 5:42 PM

We owned a house but we couldn’t afford the mortgage and moved to an apartment. For us as parents working full time I was relieved not to have to worry about the upkeep of a house. We missed not having a yard but honestly it was worth it not to have the financial burden.


Citrus Heights, CA

Gail September 30, 2008, 12:24 AM

You’ve got to be kidding me. I lived in apartments growing up and in houses too. News flash…it is OK to live in apartments when you are in the city or something. NOT cool to live in apartments when most of your friends have a house. You do what you have to do, but the don’t call it “The American Dream” for nothing.

Ten Tees January 8, 2011, 3:58 PM

Interesting info! Nice to read. I have got a point to offer about funny shirts.

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