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The Freedom of Homeownership

 

Even though this article is being released on July 6th, you are probably still celebrating the Independence Day holiday. July 4th fell on a Thursday this year, which means a 4-day weekend for many. I hear a lot of people refer to the holiday as the 4th of July and even see it written that way in a lot of advertising and marketing. I have been on a decades long campaign to remind people that we are not celebrating the 4th of July, we are celebrating the Declaration of Independence from Britain and the birth of our country.  

Our Founding Fathers were an independent group and on July 2nd, 1776, the Continental Congress voted to declare its freedom from Great Britain. Our county’s independence is worth protecting and celebrating. Our desire to be free and independent is woven into the DNA of Americans. The state motto of New Hampshire, Live Free or Die, is possibly the best-known of all state mottos and is a statement to the importance of freedom.  
 
One right we as American’s sometimes take for granted is homeownership, or the ability to own real estate. A friend who immigrated here from Cuba many years ago told me that homeownership was the greatest advantage to living in the United States. In Cuba, the government owned all the homes and everything in them. Cuban citizens were assigned a house to live in and were responsible for it and its contents. Police would come in occasionally and do an inspection and inventory of everything. If you were missing even a drinking glass or plate it was a big deal, and would lead to fines or incarceration. 
 
The closest we as Americans come to that kind of life is renting a car, a motel room, or a house. As a tenant living in a rental house, you have a responsibility to maintain the property like it was when you moved in. You are not free to make alterations as you wish, and some activities might be forbidden. You may think that there is an advantage because you are not paying a mortgage, property taxes, or for repairs, but you would be wrong. Those expenses are all built in to the rent payment, plus some. John Stuart Mill, a famous British economist and philosopher once said, “Landlords grow rich in their sleep without working..." 
 
CoreLogic recently reported that the average homeowner with a mortgage in the United States enjoyed a $28,000 increase in home equity in just the 1st quarter of 2024. As a tenant renting a home, you might get your deposit back when you leave, but that’s it. Homeowners are building wealth. Each mortgage payment is like a forced deposit into a savings account that also appreciates over time. Franklin D. Roosevelt once said, “Real estate cannot be lost or stolen, nor can it be carried away. Purchased with common sense, paid for in full, and managed with reasonable care, it is about the safest investment in the world." 
 
It is often said that homeownership is the American dream. John Paulson, an American Billionaire gives this advice, “If you don’t own a home, buy one. If you own a home, buy another one. If you own two homes, buy a third. And lend your relatives the money to buy a home."
 

Norwalk IA Real Estate – Jon Niemeyer, Broker/Owner/REALTOR® at EXIT Realty North Star. I list and sell real estate in Central Iowa including Norwalk, Des Moines, West Des Moines, Cumming, Indianola, Carlisle, Waukee, Urbandale, Grimes, Clive, Johnston, Ankeny, Altoona, and Pleasant Hill in the Counties of Warren, Polk, Dallas, and Madison. Call Jon Niemeyer at 515-490-4675.

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