Thoughts on share-houses?

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conwy
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Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by conwy »

Hey ERE-ers,

I'm 33 yo, single and have been living in various share houses for about the past decade.

I'm curious to know what my ERE comrades think about share houses.

I've lived in various types of these including:

Type 1: You rent a 2+ bed apartment then sublet the spare room(s) to person(s) of your choosing.
Type 2: You find someone who is already renting an apartment and rent one of their rooms.
Type 3: You join what is known as a 'Registered Boarding House' (in Australia, at least). These are regulated by the state, are run by an owner/manager of the building, each room has its own lock on the door (and sometimes bathroom and/or kitchenette) and they are a kind of middle-ground between separate units vs sharing. More communal than units but more private than sharing an apartment.

My experiences across all were largely positive. Most housemates I lived with were polite, respectful, good communicators and reasonably easy to live with.

Unfortunately a few bad experiences have reduced my confidence in sharing and kind of soured the overall experience.

E.g.:
* One time when I was renting an apartment and sublet some rooms, one of the housemates had his friend over and, without going into too much detail, his friend nearly got me sued (unintentionally, from ignorance/irresponsibility, but still...) thankfully I got help from a good lawyer and averted a crisis
* One time when I was renting a room in an apartment, I found the other person, while overall pleasant and easy to live with, wanted to talk endlessly with me, often pressuring me to talk when I said I was busy, so I sometimes spent hours conversing with him when I would've preferred to have some space
* Two of the Boarding Houses I lived in featured loud angry drunks, noisy heavy-smoking party goers or unpleasant argumentative characters, which was hard, especially when I needed quiet time to focus on work or get some sleep

At this point in my life, at 33, if I had my wish, I'd just live alone and have my own place.

However given the present size of my investments, and the 2% draw-down rate I wish to impose on myself, it seems like getting my own place would be almost unaffordable at present.

Maybe it's better to give up on totally retiring and instead spend a little more to get my own place, increase my drawdown rate to 3%, and work occasionally. That might make for a happier life overall.

Or maybe I should persist with the house sharing, keep my expenses to a 2% drawdown and just hope for the best? (And try to move if I encounter another unpleasant situation.)

Anyway I'm keen to hear YOUR thoughts and sharing experiences (if any).

Do you think sharing is a good idea vs. living alone? And why/why not?

What's your advice for someone my age/situation if any?

Thanks!

2Birds1Stone
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

Why not just do this option, with someone you know is clean, courteous, and responsible?

"Type 1: You rent a 2+ bed apartment then sublet the spare room(s) to person(s) of your choosing."

My solution was moving in with my now DW over 10 years ago, and sharing a 1 bedroom apt.

If you're dating, then there are certainly benefits to having your own place. Over the past year of traveling, DW and I learned that we really appreciate the ability to have peace and quiet. We can handle living with others on a shorter term basis.

conwy
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by conwy »

Thanks for your input 2Birds1Stone.
2Birds1Stone wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 7:36 am
Why not just do this option, with someone you know is clean, courteous, and responsible?

"Type 1: You rent a 2+ bed apartment then sublet the spare room(s) to person(s) of your choosing."
Unfortunately I don't know many people like that! :lol: Or at least, the ones I do know, are already sorted or prefer to live in a different neighborhood.

However, I did just recently come across a very nice self-contained 2-bedroom unit going for the same price as a studio, which I could probably just barely afford while sticking to my 2% rule.

So I could rent that one then spend some time finding a suitable person to take the other room. It'll be extremely cheap with 2 people sharing, in fact, among the cheapest I've ever paid for a room! It's a bit of a small unit, but I think 2 quiet people sharing could manage and probably wouldn't notice eachother too much.

biaggio
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by biaggio »

My two cents. I lived in a shared housing for a brief period right out of school. If you can afford the option to rent/buy then it mostly depends on your personality whether you should share or not. For me (strong introvert), it was absolutely not worth it: giving up huge chunk in life quality to save a few bucks. The only way I could do this again would be if I e.g. owned a house and rented one whole floor with completely separate entrance to good, stable tenants (say a nice young family with stable employment). The rent could be used to cover the mortgage payments.

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Alphaville
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by Alphaville »

Sharing works, but you have to screen/interview the tenants thoroughly.

In DC, with its expensive real estate and transient political appointments, professionals often share housing, often high end stuff.

E.g.
https://washingtondc.craigslist.org/doc ... 98444.html
(nice house)
even the politicians do it
https://www.cnn.com/2013/12/04/politics ... index.html
(this is ofc just a dorm for them)

Similar thing in London where I believe adult shares are quite common:
https://www.onthemarket.com/to-rent/hou ... re/london/

nomadscientist
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by nomadscientist »

Owner-occupation with roommates seems like the long term sustainable option. You can select ruthlessly for people who fit around your life, rather than vice-versa. There is no legal obligation or social expectation for you to give and take in such a situation.

2Birds1Stone
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

OP, I looked through your older posts, just to see if anything popped out.

Looks like you were/are a very highly compensated individual with a sizable nest egg. Why not determine housing based on lifestyle preferences and mental health as a priority? It seems like the self imposed 2% drawdown rate might be unnecessarily strict on yourself.

Did you stop working all together?

IlliniDave
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by IlliniDave »

I had roommates in various arrangements from my first day of college through just before getting married. Simply based on personal preferences I won't do it again unless I fall on hard times and it's that or live on the street. The only exceptions would be the appearance of a promising SO, or something temporary to help out a family member. Were I to change my mind, I would definitely look for an option where I either held the lease or the deed so as to have the final say on who might be a dwelling mate.

7Wannabe5
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

I find myself in similar conundrum at the moment, complicated by Covid and the fact that the older you get the more difficult it is to find peers with whom to house-share unless also your SO. Even tenting campsites are too expensive (approximately $600/month) for my budget ($850 total but want to get it down closer to 1 Jacob)if I am solo not sharing.

Since 1 Jacob (climate parity calculation as opposed to inflation calculation) per month roughly boundaries fair share of planetary resources/sinks, it seems like it may now be the case that residents of developed realms can't afford kitchen/bathroom/garden level privacy within this spending boundary. Although, owner-occupied option still leaves possibility of "dominance over realm" in play as affordable. It might be a bit of a cheat but another possibility would be sharing your living space with your business space. Then the portion of rent/ownership-expense going towards your business would be filed under Business/Investment Expense rather than Personal Expense. I actually don't think this would be a cheat because any given corporation in which you might otherwise passively invest is also going to be burning carbon towards overhead, but this is assigned to ultimate consumer within 1 Jacob calculation/ERE model.

I am brainstorming like crazy and I even considered making my next online dating profile a semi-blatant housemate quest. Since most men are almost unbelievable level literal, this scheme might even work out better than it sounds, except most men my age already own houses, and I am NEVER moving into a house some man already owns again!

I also investigated having a hitch put on my Smart car and buying a motorcycle camper, but the only hitch that fits on a Smart car is currently unavailable likely due to Covid.

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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by jacob »

There are "senior roommate" matching sites. I don't know how young they go. Obviously also 55+ communities. The ability to look out for each others liabilities (falls?) could be an asset. This of course depends on the match and not getting stuck with the short end of the stick.

The difficulty may lie in the fact that whereas people are practically uniform commodities in their early/mid twenties, the ergodicity has had much longer time to work. IOW, the variation in the 25yo demographic < variation at 50yo < variation at 75yo might make it somewhat less trivial because the "perfect population" is smaller.

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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

Sharing housing with another woman around my age seems like it would either be dreary or unstable. Also, I am committed to working 50 days/year in semi-retirement, and I always seem to be working on at least one rather big hobby-business project wherever I live, so probably for me it makes most sense to combine home/business space since it also offers added benefit of more control/privacy. I did quick internet search and 10% gross revenue for rent given 20% profit on top of $15/hour wage "paid" to myself seems reasonable (not more wasteful than typical corporation), so $300 X12 =$3600 = 10% of $36,000 gross revenue -$6000 wages paid to me = $30,000- $7200 profit= $22,800 for other expenses possibly including more wage hours paid to me. Obviously, with a solo-preneur enterprise, differentiating between profit and owner wage draw is kind of silly, but I'm plugging in $15/hr because roughly representative of easily acquired part-time flexible work wage on open labor market.

anesde
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by anesde »

Retiring to live a life you don’t want doesn’t make much sense to me. I would suggest looking to see what synergies you can bring by re-looking at your options. For example, it might make sense to buy a larger place, and rent out the rooms yourself. As nomadscientist mentioned you can be quite ruthless in picking your own roommates. If you structure it well their rent can more than cover your housing cost, leaving you with a way to generate income. That could partially offset the lost income from shifting your capital from other investments to housing, plus lower your expenses as housing would be covered. Specifics will depend on house prices, rent levels, and leverage but it’s definitely possible. Given you seem to be (?) fully retired and potentially might be flexible with your location you can certainly make it work.

Otherwise how long would you need to work to retire the way you want? That might be a better option if you wouldn’t like managing a household and taking the risk on roommates, etc. Regardless I wouldn’t advise retiring to a lifestyle that you don’t actually want. That defeats the purpose of FIRE or ERE (IMHO).

anesde
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by anesde »

Also, to answer your direct question I lived in similar housing in my early/mid twenties. I found as long as I had my own bathroom and respectful roommates who cleaned up after themselves I didn’t mind it at all. I would happily keep on doing it (although only in the context I mentioned above, where I was the owner and controlled the situation) except I’m now with my SO and so we live together.

I think shared housing is necessary, especially in HCOL cities that have a lot of professionals who migrated from elsewhere. Which is part of the reason that an entrepreneurial minded person with capital and management skills can do quite well providing it in the right location.

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Ego
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by Ego »

One of the biggest lessons from ffj's journal before he deleted it was that no matter how far out into the sticks you move to buffer yourself from the world there is always the possibility that a terrible neighbor will move nearby and you will be forced to move further away to create an even bigger buffer.

There are alternatives. You may have to figure out how to deal with the things that bother you. 'Deal' in one of two ways. It may require you to deal head on with the person whose behavior is particularly egregious. Face to face, human to human. This is a skill that is rapidly in decline and one that pays great dividends. The other alternative is to deal with yourself and the way you are reacting to the situation. A noisy upstairs neighbor can drive you crazy if you let them. This is also a skill, learning how to not let things make you crazy.

I look at it as a tradeoff. How much are you willing to pay to have complete control over your environment? By pay I mean, how many more years are you willing to work to get exactly what you want vs getting what is good enough? How elastic is your tolerance and how much of that elasticity will you lose by giving in to the temptation to build bigger buffers?

Comfort inflation.

ETA, I am not saying you are doing any of those things. This is just the way I tend to look at this kind of problem. Whenever I feel the desire to move to a nice big house I look at these photos and realize that... grand scheme of things we have it quite well in our tiny apartment....
https://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2017/ ... ng/526881/

conwy
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by conwy »

Ego wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 8:58 pm
One of the biggest lessons from ffj's journal before he deleted it was that no matter how far out into the sticks you move to buffer yourself from the world there is always the possibility that a terrible neighbor will move nearby and you will be forced to move further away to create an even bigger buffer.
These things were definitely going through my mind too ... what if I move to my own place and it ends up as bad or even worse than before because neighbors move in nearby or the place gets broken into etc. etc.

These factors put me into an agony of indecision.

It seems like every decision has equal weighting of pros and cons on either side and I just can't for the life of me figure out what to do!
Ego wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 8:58 pm
There are alternatives. You may have to figure out how to deal with the things that bother you. 'Deal' in one of two ways. It may require you to deal head on with the person whose behavior is particularly egregious. Face to face, human to human. This is a skill that is rapidly in decline and one that pays great dividends.
I would love to possess such a skill if it were possible. I don't know if it is though. How do you know for sure whether your actions will improve the situation or just degrade it even further?

I could just ignore the noisy shouting and partying and romping of people through my part of the building. It might keep going and get worse.

I could approach them very respectfully and tactfully and very kindly ask them if they could, with all due respect, please consider making a little less noise when it gets very late in the evening during the weeknights. They might sense weakness/cowardice and go off their brains at me.

I could approach them in a kind of "tough guy" manner and tell them to clean up their act or else. That might also make it worse - way worse. Confrontation might push them to go off their brains at me.

Is it really a skill? Isn't it just kind of dumb luck whether your efforts to pacify a group of people who are being disruptive either cause them to tone it down or cause them to physically assault you, and everything in between those two extremes?

Also I'm not sure I have the time/energy to develop such a skill right now, as I'm currently working two full-time jobs at once. (Sorry I forgot to mention that detail, but I guess it's pretty important and relevant.)
Ego wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 8:58 pm
I look at it as a tradeoff. How much are you willing to pay to have complete control over your environment? By pay I mean, how many more years are you willing to work to get exactly what you want vs getting what is good enough? How elastic is your tolerance and how much of that elasticity will you lose by giving in to the temptation to build bigger buffers?
So I've ended up sending over a deposit of one week's wort of rent for the small unit I mentioned, which would stretch my 2% budget a little, but be fairly doable if I keep other costs to a minimum and definitely affordable if I work part of the year (even if only 3 months out of the year). It is eminently affordable on my current income, as I have 2 full-time jobs right now.

My reasoning is - while I'm working, I'm willing to spend a bit extra for the comfort and peace and quiet and safety that I feel I need in order to do my job properly. Later down the track, if/when I quit this work, I'll look again at downsizing. But at least while I've got a high income and a safe+quiet place to live and work, it probably makes more sense to maximise comfort. I can still keep spending low on things like food, clothing, etc.

However it's scary and worrying to imagine that after signing the lease and moving in to this place, there might be some other kind of disturbance, e.g. break-ins/burglaries in the neighborhood, noisy neighbors, etc. But I guess I'm resigned to that possibility, as pretty much most of the human population has to deal with that possibility, unless you live in some kind of gated community or super fortressed security apartment with armoured guards out the front. I guess you have to draw the safety/security line somewhere.
Ego wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 8:58 pm
Comfort inflation.
Yes I do worry about this being 'comfort inflation'.

I feel like I mastered the following in my life so far:

* Living in a small space
* Sharing the house with many other people
* Eating very cheaply and making my own meals
* Living without a car
* Living without digital luxuries like Netflix, Spotify, etc
* Minimal possessions and trying to maintain the things I do own

But the thing I really haven't mastered (yet) is:

* Living in an environment where I feel physically unsafe (e.g. threat of potential assault hanging over my head)

I certainly never found this last one to be an issue in most sharehouses I lived in, because they were nearly always filled with professionals or full-time workers, so I always felt like I was around safe people who wanted to earn their keep and were unlikely to ever turn violent.

Unfortunately - and I know this might be more based on feelings and not so rational - but I've lost that feeling of safety lately. I've been viewing many sharehouses over the past two weeks. Something must have changed in the areas I'm viewing, because now it seems like a lot of people are either not working or are doing part-time/gig work, and/or just "feel" unsafe and seedy.

Just one example - one of the viewings I went to, I met the other two housemates on the first floor. Upon being introduced to me by the house manager, they seemed to physically withdraw, averted eye contact, spoke very quietly so I couldn't hear what they were saying and shuffled awkwardly around. The housekeeper assured me that they were professionals and that it wasn't a party house. The TV was blaring a loud sports program. The house manager stepped out for a moment and when I talked to them they said they like to party sometimes, when they feel like it. Also despite the place being advertised as 'non smoking' and promised the same over the phone, the moment I walked into the hallway I could already smell musty cigarette smoke smell. These things all combined to make me feel uncomfortable living there.

Is this just me being overly picky? Or does it sound like a slightly uncomfortable living situation? Should I have moved there or not? Would you live in a place where people could start partying at any time, smoke at any time and blare sports loudly on the TV at any time?
Ego wrote:
Sat Jan 09, 2021 8:58 pm
ETA, I am not saying you are doing any of those things. This is just the way I tend to look at this kind of problem. Whenever I feel the desire to move to a nice big house I look at these photos and realize that... grand scheme of things we have it quite well in our tiny apartment....
https://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2017/ ... ng/526881/
Thanks for linking this article. It's interesting and also sad and depressing that some people have to live like this in Hong Kong.

You did mention that you live in a tiny apartment.

So you do have your own kitchen, no?
You can work during the day without hearing incessant loud conversations through the walls?
You can work in the evening (9-11 PM) without loud party sounds and cigarette smoke leaking into your personal space?
You can sleep at night without being woken up by people next door or above talking loudly at 2:00 AM?

If so, then I only want what you have.

And I think I've scored it finally, albeit at a significant price. Part of me wonders if I should've just learned to adapt to the noise, partying, smoking, loud conversations, etc. in order to save money.

But the decision is complicated by the fact of having two jobs currently and wanting to be able to focus on work, at least for the next 6 months. And also wanting to live a nice life, which for me, includes being able to get enough sleep and occasionally have a quiet peaceful moment without noise, and being able to feel like I live around reasonable sober, safe people who aren't going to suddenly turn aggressive.

Maybe the level of safety and comfort I seek is a luxury though? I don't know.

How does one figure out what is a normal or acceptable or "realistic" expectation for quality of life?

If I knew such a thing, maybe I could then focus on trying to adjust/adapt myself to that expectation.
Last edited by conwy on Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:15 am, edited 1 time in total.

thrifty++
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by thrifty++ »

I just turned 39 and have been living in share houses since I was 31. I had a brief gap of living on my own from 29 to 31. Before that it was always share houses as well.

In NZ, where its fucking ridiculous expensive, living in a share house is the only option if you are single and want to achieve financial independence.

I actually dont mind too much. The best way for me has been to get the lease and then sublease the rooms. I had a brief stint as a flatmate in someone else's place and hated it. Much better to have the lease I think. Seems much more secure. The responsibility is worth the security.

While I have been the person subletting the rooms I have had no issues. I try to find big old run down apartments. They tend to be affordable but have of space. New apartments are awful as you live on top of eachother. Currently I am renting a huge old 130sqm apartment and have two flatmates. All three bedrooms are huge and spaced separately around the apartment with hallways, kitchen, lounge, bathrooms in between. I often go by a week without running into either of my two flatmates. Also its easy to have sex dates around without anyone knowing or hearing. My last apartment was just like this too. Best to go for old and run down, because new apartments like these cost a fortune in rent. And old apartments are cool as you can decorate them to look amazing and funky and unique even if they are run down. Character rich.

I tend to advertise very specifically to make sure I get the right people. I make it clear I am busy and also am a bit of a bedroom hermit. And I get a gage from them whether they are the same. I can tell. And people that are like that want to live with me too. And we can all be peaceful harmonious introverted hermits living together. I have never had any issues with flamates while being the lease holder. In terms of being a flatmate in someone else's place, whole other story. Lots of drama and shit. Thank god those days are over where I am rich enough to just carry a lease. I would hate to go back to being a flatmate in someone else's place. Cause me a lot of stress in my 20s. After a brief 3.5 months stint of it a couple of years ago I would never go back. If it came to it,I would rather get a trailer and live alone.

I actually love my place. When you are the leaseholder you can make it more like a home. I have been here 2 years now. Always have great flatmates. Dont want to leave this place I will stay as long as I can. My last place and flatmates were awesome too. A couple of them have become good long term friends.

conwy
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by conwy »

thrifty++ wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:14 am
In NZ, where its fucking ridiculous expensive, living in a share house is the only option if you are single and want to achieve financial independence.
I heard it's expensive in NZ. Sounds like a common problem between AU and NZ!
thrifty++ wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:14 am
The best way for me has been to get the lease and then sublease the rooms.
thrifty++ wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:14 am
Seems much more secure. The responsibility is worth the security.
thrifty++ wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:14 am
While I have been the person subletting the rooms I have had no issues. I try to find big old run down apartments. They tend to be affordable but have of space. New apartments are awful as you live on top of eachother. Currently I am renting a huge old 130sqm apartment and have two flatmates. All three bedrooms are huge and spaced separately around the apartment with hallways, kitchen, lounge, bathrooms in between. I often go by a week without running into either of my two flatmates. Also its easy to have sex dates around without anyone knowing or hearing. My last apartment was just like this too. Best to go for old and run down, because new apartments like these cost a fortune in rent. And old apartments are cool as you can decorate them to look amazing and funky and unique even if they are run down. Character rich.
You know, this sounds like a really cool idea! I think I need to try this.

It's difficult to find tenants in the market as it stands currently, but I think the market might slowly improve, especially if/when COVID gets sorted and/or as people start to settle into new areas. Currently in my state (NSW) there's a mass exodus of professionals from the city, as they can all do remote work instead. So I'm kinda also waiting for the dust to settle and find out where people like me are most likely to be found.
thrifty++ wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:14 am
I had a brief stint as a flatmate in someone else's place and hated it. Much better to have the lease I think. Seems much more secure. The responsibility is worth the security.
Yep I think this is my reality too. It's just becoming too disruptive to live around a bunch of people who I have no choice over and who might change for the worse at any moment.
thrifty++ wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:14 am
I tend to advertise very specifically to make sure I get the right people. I make it clear I am busy and also am a bit of a bedroom hermit. And I get a gage from them whether they are the same. I can tell. And people that are like that want to live with me too. And we can all be peaceful harmonious introverted hermits living together. I have never had any issues with flamates while being the lease holder.
Do you get enough applicants for you to have much choice? How long does it take you to find someone? Aren't you paying quite a lot of rent during that initial waiting period? Does this happen fairly infrequently (e.g. once every year or 2 years) so that in total you're not spending much time paying for empty rooms?

If I felt confident that I could find good flatmates, then I would probably try something similar to what you're doing. But I think I'll need to do some market research first.
thrifty++ wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:14 am
In terms of being a flatmate in someone else's place, whole other story. Lots of drama and shit. Thank god those days are over where I am rich enough to just carry a lease. I would hate to go back to being a flatmate in someone else's place. Cause me a lot of stress in my 20s. After a brief 3.5 months stint of it a couple of years ago I would never go back. If it came to it,I would rather get a trailer and live alone.
Yeah it seems like you had a similar problem to me.

When you have to join a pre-existing sharehouse, you don't know who's there, you don't know who's going to be there in a few months, and you have no power to change who's there if one person (or multiple people) start to become a nuisance.

I'm starting to think I really should be the lease holder and then sublease to others. It makes sense that now I have money and an income stream, I can afford to spend more upfront (i.e. lease a big place) to save money in the long-term (subletting to reliable, safe housemates).

Thanks for your comments

thrifty++
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by thrifty++ »

conwy wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:32 am
Do you get enough applicants for you to have much choice? How long does it take you to find someone? Aren't you paying quite a lot of rent during that initial waiting period? Does this happen fairly infrequently (e.g. once every year or 2 years) so that in total you're not spending much time paying for empty rooms?
I tend to find it really easy TBH. I live in central Wellington. The rental market is tight. Its a very intellectual city as well with a very high proportion of educated people. Most people are professionals or work in the arts. I dont tend to have a great deal of gaps where I have empty rooms. In the last two years I did have one room empty for a month. But, thats ok. I preferred to pay for it then get a shit flatmate. Plus, I charge my flatmates more rent than my share so it easily covers the empty rooms.

I tell you what, if you manage it especially well you can end up in a situation where you pay much lower tent than your flatmates. This comes down to hunting out the right flat where there is price arbitrage and also staying in a place a long time. Generally, I find, the longer I am in a place, the more out of kilter my rent is to the market. Landlords tend not to increase rent for good tenants. My last place there was a large margin so my share of the rent was extremely low for the last year I lived there.

I did hear that the NSW rental market is a bit diferent. I heard that people are leaving Sydney city central and that rents were dropping. Hasnt happened quite as much in NZ as COVID has had very little impact here. But then, thats all good for you, because its about the arbitrage right. So, the reduction in flatmate income potential should be offset by the reduction in rent for the least. Now is probably a good time to get a place. If you are in Sydney I would imagine there is an abundance of flatmate options. Like in Kings Cross, Potts Point, Darlinghurst etc. Redfern is my favourite Sydney suburb.

conwy
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Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by conwy »

thrifty++ wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:59 am
I did hear that the NSW rental market is a bit diferent. I heard that people are leaving Sydney city central and that rents were dropping. Hasnt happened quite as much in NZ as COVID has had very little impact here. But then, thats all good for you, because its about the arbitrage right.
It's a bit of an interesting situation in Sydney... like nothing I've ever seen pretty much in my lifetime.

Yes, rents have come down a lot. A lot of places that were very high have come down a lot, especially in the suburbs you mention.

However, at the same time (and I know this can be somewhat subjective) I feel the safety level has dropped quite a lot.

There seems to be a lot of unpleasant and nefarious activity in the city center and inner suburbs and the whole atmosphere is very different.

Just a few things I saw in the last 3 months:

* A guy standing on the corner of a very major and busy intersection stripping what looked like bandages off his leg to reveal a bloody wound and then picking at the wound
* A disheveled looking guy drinking hard liquor in the park in broad daylight
* A guy standing in the middle of a street in broad daylight swearing and shouting at a passerby to leave, and then following me asking me if I had a problem as I walked in a different direction
* Staying in a hotel one time, during the day, hearing a guy and girl yelling at eachother, running up and down the stairs, getting into a punching fight (I could hear the punch), then both of them arguing about getting money and fresh syringes
* A woman following me around for a bit when I was in the park calling me 'Jimmy', in broad daylight
* Big groups of youths hanging around at various times of day

Admittedly maybe I'm overly sensitive and just need to toughen up a bit.
thrifty++ wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 12:59 am
So, the reduction in flatmate income potential should be offset by the reduction in rent for the least. Now is probably a good time to get a place. If you are in Sydney I would imagine there is an abundance of flatmate options. Like in Kings Cross, Potts Point, Darlinghurst etc. Redfern is my favourite Sydney suburb.
The reduction in rent is certainly significant. However the thing I'm most concerned about is the reduction in suitable housemates and the safety of the area in general.

If a studio isn't being leased out after months on the market at a 75% discount, I start to suspect there might be some kind of issue with the area in general.

It might just be a great deal and no one's noticed it, but I'm suspicious...

Don't want to find out the hard way that the area has suddenly turned unsafe and I'm risking my wellbeing living there.

Maybe I'm paranoid, but surely you have to be careful too, right?

thrifty++
Posts: 1133
Joined: Sat May 23, 2015 3:46 pm

Re: Thoughts on share-houses?

Post by thrifty++ »

conwy wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 1:25 am
It's a bit of an interesting situation in Sydney... like nothing I've ever seen pretty much in my lifetime.

Yes, rents have come down a lot. A lot of places that were very high have come down a lot, especially in the suburbs you mention.

However, at the same time (and I know this can be somewhat subjective) I feel the safety level has dropped quite a lot.

There seems to be a lot of unpleasant and nefarious activity in the city center and inner suburbs and the whole atmosphere is very different.
Oh interesting. Its kind of hard for me to picture. I do know Sydney very well. I have family there and have visited many times. I lived there for 3 months at one stage just off oxford st. I have generally felt like Aussie is safer than NZ. In terms of general street crime/random attacks. Although I think there is a lot more drugs in big Aussie cities. Like meth and heroin. I would hate to live with people on drugs. Or next door to them. Hideous. Unless they were like once a year ectasy or LSD users. But anything else, like meth or heroin, utterly hideous. Or alcoholics.

All the things you mention are pretty regular experiences in Auckland and Wellington. Although, there is an increase in that stuff lately, mainly due to a large influx of public housing in Auckland and Wellington. Seems that in a bid to get everyone off the streets from when COVID first hit, the govt bought up and snapped up a lot of the hotels and apartment buildings and filled them with problem people. So we see them a lot more here too. Still, most city livers dont seem to be leaving the city centre.
conwy wrote:
Sun Jan 10, 2021 1:25 am
The reduction in rent is certainly significant. However the thing I'm most concerned about is the reduction in suitable housemates. If a studio isn't being leased out after months on the market at a 75% discount, I start to suspect there might be some kind of issue with the area in general.
WOW, thats quite a change. Maybe it is worth it to get your own place then. For a studio. How much would that cost?

In some ways its actually kind of exciting. Maybe cities like Sydney will actually be bohemian again. Apparently this is going on a lot in New York and San Fran too. The big rent reductions.

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