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Myths in the world of renting and breaking young people

Author: Vered Barel
Does renting an apartment with roommates help reduce expenses on housing?

The initial forays into the rental market will present you with a variety of options, and in their wake questions will arise: Living in a shared apartment? In a housing unit? Or maybe in an apartment alone in a less desirable area? What most of them have in common is cost, which will make up a significant portion of your monthly expenses. In order for you to choose the most suitable form of living for you, in the general aspect and no less important – in the economic aspect, here is a list of common myths:

Myth: “Rent that includes all the bills is the most profitable”

Rent that includes all bills is usually collected in divided apartments or housing units, and the motive for this is usually not generosity on the part of the landlord, but the fact that the apartment was divided or the unit is rented without a permit in violation of the law, which makes it impossible to pay the bills directly to the authorities. Living in such an apartment is a risk in itself, which may lead you to immediate eviction from the apartment at best and prosecution as accomplices in the worst case.

Remember that municipal taxes are charged according to the size of the apartment, and that electricity and water consumption by a single person or a couple will usually not be high enough to choose the “all-inclusive” plan, which sometimes only serves as an illusion that it is savings. It doesn’t matter what the landlord says and claims – in most cases it costs less, and for you it costs more, or much more.

Myth: “Renting a room in a shared apartment – a huge financial saving”

Living with roommates creates savings in many cases, but this is not always the case and depends on various variables and, of course, on the partners themselves. When you look at the big picture and look at current costs, partner apartments will have more costs that do not depend on you, but will affect you financially:

Apartment size: Shared apartments are usually relatively large and have a spacious living room and a large kitchen and sometimes an additional bathroom. When you examine the apartment, you get the impression that it is a spacious, comfortable and luxurious apartment and is best suited for living with roommates, but this convenience is reflected in the amount of the municipal tax bill. Arnona payments are divided between the partners in this case, but the difference is not always worthwhile compared to the advantages of living alone in a one-and-a-half-room apartment, for example, whose total area is usually much smaller than the common spaces in the roommates’ apartment.

Bills : With the exception of municipal taxes, the distribution of bills is unequal: since it is not possible to calculate how much electricity, water and gas each person consumed. The distribution will be carried out according to the total cost divided by the number of partners.

If your partner works or studies at home, it means that the air conditioner will be on overtime, which will also affect your share of the electricity bill. If your partner has a friend who settles in with you regularly on weekends and not only, the bills will spill over into an amount that can be divided into three rather than two, and that’s just in a nutshell.

These limitations will lead to the fact that living in a roommate’s apartment may be more economical than living alone, but the difference between living in a one-and-a-half-room apartment and a room in a roommate’s apartment will be less significant than you initially thought.

Myth: “It is more profitable to rent a furnished and equipped apartment, even at a higher price”

As in many areas, everything is relative. Renting a furnished apartment will save both hassle and quite a bit of money, especially if it is a first move. At the same time, the feasibility may be dwarfed when it comes to furniture and equipment of the old type that tends to break down. The furniture and appliances left in the apartment will not always be the newest and most successful, and the advantage may turn out to be a disadvantage if you do not like the old-fashioned sofa, the wardrobe will be of the old crumbly type and the refrigerator will be revealed to be a heavy electricity guzzler that produces ice in wholesale quantities.

The disadvantage may prove even more significant if you are required to commit to the presence and integrity of the furniture and appliances at the end of the contract. Pay attention to the clauses in the rental contract that deal with movables. Verify which contractual party is responsible for the integrity of the devices.

Myth: “It is better to rent an apartment in a slightly remote area, if the rent is significantly lower”

You study at Tel Aviv University, but are considering renting an apartment in Petah Tikva in order to save. They work in Herzliya, but prefer to live in Netanya and pay less.

There’s no doubt that the farther you get from the center you’ll save a lot of money on rent, but you have to consider the cost of travel and the alternative cost of time you’ll spend traveling. If you are using public transportation, examine the accessibility and cost of such transportation. If you own a car, and therefore feel that proximity to work or school is less significant to you, remember that the cost of car and gas maintenance may be higher than the difference in rent.

Every person has his own set of considerations and preferences when choosing a residential apartment for rent, but what most of us have in common is the desire to reduce as much as possible the current living costs. Remember that not everything starts and ends with rent, and that the additional clauses, which are less noticeable at first, will be much more noticeable after the lease begins.

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