Renting a house like you own it

The concept of renting a house can be simple. You look for a place that you feel comfortable paying for and move your belongings across town in several boxes. You unpack your boxes, clean the place, buy your groceries and necessities and enjoy your first night at the new place. The first night, is perfect.

In your head, you start making the same resolutions you would on New Years Eve. You keep the place spotless and organized, you’ll finally cook your meals and you’re going to save your money so that you can go out with your friends every weekend. The plan is set as you slowly doze off into your dreams.

For the first several weeks, you may succeed. Hell, you may even be a little proud of yourself just how far you’ve gotten. The new independent you are just about ready to tackle everything you may come across. It all feels very exciting.

However, as you slowly settle into the new environment, you work your 9-to-5’s and suddenly, home becomes home. But it’s not the same. This time, there isn’t anyone to take care of you. You have your own responsibilities. You have to wash your own clothes, clean your own dishes, vacuum the house, etc. This all can be very taxing, especially when you have to spend the majority of the day earning your wages too.

Over time, the eccentric energy that you came with, slowly starts to fade. Clothes and dishes begin to pile up and you barely eat anything that requires any preparations that takes longer than 10 minutes. You come home from work and all you can think about is becoming that couch potato you’ve always dreamt about. Clothes start to smell, bills begin to stack and suddenly things don’t look so bright anymore.

The thing that many don’t realize is that the transition into personal freedom is a jump in itself.

Having recently acquired a new roommate, the same traits can be seen. Traits that I have had the luck of experiencing myself. But these aren’t things to blame anyone about. In the end, the apartment belongs to you. Whether it’s about one, two, seven or ten people living in the same complex, there shouldn’t be any differentiation when it comes to household maintenance. When they say that the place should be of equal responsibility, it is wrong to think that it should be split among all tenants.

Your home is like the world. It’s not about everyone doing the bit they are responsible for. It’s about cooperating for the greater good. Regardless of whether someone else works towards it, you have a social responsibility to do what is right. It may feel bad to keep having to clean after someone else, but it’s what we do in the hope that the other person may one day learn. However, if nothing is done, we will all suffer the consequences.

So, I suggest the following. Imagine the following: Rather than renting the place and risk getting kicked out, you finally own your first place. A place you have worked very hard for to purchase and a place without alternatives. It’s clean, it’s pure and everything inside is yours. The product of your own blood, sweat and tears.

The place is something that you wouldn’t want people to mess with. Although having guests for a housewarming may seem the best way to celebrate, at the end of it all, it’s you who is left to clean it all. Similarly, for the apartment, it is a place you rent. It is yours. Keep it clean, budget your spending, prepare your meals (although sometimes ordering or eating out is fine too). And in that way, become the responsible person you have actually wanted to become.

Because other than the monetary value, there should not be a difference between what you rent and what you own. The place, is still yours and it is a reflection of the current you.

So work hard to become the best of you.

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