In preparation for moving house, I’ve started getting all my financials in order. As part of this, I’ve been updating my spendings spread sheet. For people who’ve been reading this blog for a while, you’ll already know that I keep this updated to a rather detailed level.
I’ve been keeping my spreadsheet since March 2009. According to my spreadsheet, I have spent £60,158 on rent alone. The actual *real* figure for how much money I have spent on rent is actually higher, since I had been living in rented accommodation for a number of years before I started tracking my spending on a spreadsheet.
£60,158. That doesn’t include household bills, car bills, food, etc. That is literally the cost of keeping just a roof over my head since 2009. It stings a little more when I think of rent payments as ‘dead money’, since it wasn’t going towards buying a place of my own, or towards paying off some kind of debt or saving.
Granted, I live in an expensive part of the country. I also made a choice to live on my own for some of the last 7 years, which will always be a more expensive than renting a room in a house.
That said – rental costs are only getting higher. I consider myself incredibly fortunate to now be in a position where I can actually throw money at a mortgage. In the years leading up to this point, I remember the feeling of helplessness as I watched houses only become more expensive and seemingly out of reach.
It is thanks to a mixture of hard work, good fortune, and all too sensible decisions that have gotten me to this point. I can’t help but feel slightly sneeped when I look at that £60,158 sum and think that would look much nicer put against a mortgage payment. Or a deposit.
There have been many news articles that cover this kind of thing in recent years, so I have little new to add to it. House ownership is becoming an unachievable dream for all too many – in a country where house ownership is seen as a thing that should be something that happens when you reach adulthood.
There’s no easy fix. But house ownership is not exactly the badge of adulthood that it was once considered – instead, it’s becoming more of a badge of good fortune. There’s something pretty broken about that, in my eyes.