Renting to Own…to Good to be True?

Owning a home – it’s one of those things that we’re told we should do from early on in life. Home ownership is considered a status symbol that separates the middle class from the poor class. Wikipedia even states that a core pillar of the the American dream is owning property.

This is why even when living in a location where it’s better to rent than buy, many people are insistent on owning a home. Since the housing market bottomed out and loans are difficult to obtain, finding an alternative way to sell or own a home has become a necessity. One option is a “lease to own” contract between a buyer and homeowner. The future buyer will rent the property for a period of time, then have the option to purchase the home at the end the lease.

Continue reading Renting to Own…to Good to be True?

How To Share A Broker’s Fee

Today we answer our first question emailed to Dear Splitwise.

Dear Splitwise,

How does one split the broker’s fee fairly in a NYC apartment? If someone has their own bathroom, should they pay more, or is it split evenly by all roommmates?

Broke and Broker

Dear Broke and Broker,

It’s true that in New York, Boston, and other major metro areas you often have to pay a broker’s fee to the real estate agent to get an apartment, even one you would share with roommates. Which stinks.

So, Broke and Broker, your question is: if the bedrooms are different enough in quality that one bedroom should have a higher rent, the question is, should that person also pay a bigger share of the broker’s fee? Great question! Continue reading How To Share A Broker’s Fee