Lending Club Blog

Taking Advantage of the Crisis

Renting and Buying Property

Everyone knows that all clouds have a silver lining – the thundering rainstorms last night in Rio De Janiero, where I’m living, made the streets extremely clean this morning :-) So how about the financial crisis? Does something this harsh, this horrible, and this painful also have its own silver lining? Definitely.

I’ve written earlier about how some expenses are suddenly cheap, such as travel or starting your own business. How else can you take advantage of this crisis? For one thing, now might be the time to buy a house or rent an apartment. Why? Because prices have gone way down. Prices in San Francisco, for example, have decreased over 4% from their peak in 2008, according to an article from sfgate.com. Currently at an average of $1,556/month, rents have decreased as occupancy rates have fallen. Economists at IHS Global Insight predict that housing prices might even reach 50% of their top prices, according to the Orange County Register.

So what can you do to take advantage of this? Follow these steps:

  1. Figure out what you are paying for your rent.
  2. Look up similar rental rates in your area. Check Zillow.com to look at real estate prices near you.
  3. Are you overpaying? If so, talk to your landlord and try to negotiate a lower price. If not, consider moving out at the end of your lease. You might be able to find a better place for a cheaper price.

Would you consider moving to a new home or apartment if prices were cheaper? Are you overpaying?

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009 at 6:43 am

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