These thoughts were prompted by Pernille Ripp’s blog about her once-in-a-lifetime experience of flying first class on an intercontinental flight. It reminded her how some people are “given more because [they] had more to begin with”. And it’s true.
As we say in Dutch, “I’ve always held up my own pants”, which means I have always taken care of myself. Having said that, I do live in a country where I had the chance to go to University for a relatively low fee (all though it still hurts) and was able to do so during a time that “the state” still provided students with a small monthly allowance, so that did make a big difference.
All though I always worked during my years as a student, I did have quite a secure safety net, knowing that my parents would have my back if anything went wrong.
I was lucky with the student dorm I had, which was relatively cheap and run by a very reliable housing association. Renting from this association, gave me the possibility to move into a lovely apartment (at a fair and affordable rent) after I finished studying for another couple of years, as I figured out what I was going to do with my life.
A few years later I moved into my current home with my boyfriend, G, that we do pay quite a hefty sum for, but nothing out of the ordinary for the city we live in (but ridiculous really, if you compare it to a comparable house in a different area of the country). We can afford it and still live quite comfortably.
And now, by no merit of my own whatsoever, I may soon be a living in a house of my own. I mean, an actual house, owned by me (and G).
This “situation” has undeniably sent my score on the scale of privilege soaring through the roof, all though I am still struggling to refer to it as a “blessing”, as many seem to do.
People keep telling me there are several reasons why I should want a house of my own:
- Renting a house sends your money into the pockets of strangers, whereas owning a house sends your money “into the structure” of the thing you own (and therefore back into your own pockets).
- It’s an investment for “later”.
- It gives you stability and a “sense of place”, as you build a home and become part of a neighborhood community.
- The monthly payments of a mortgage are usually lower than the rent.
This last point is usually the one people throw at me first, but because it bugs me the most, I put it last.
And the part I really really really hate, is the part where I have to admit that someone is giving me money (like I said, no merit of my own), making it possible for me to, not only have a house of my own but also pay EVEN LESS than I already do.
And I’m doing just fine! I don’t NEED a lower monthly payment. I can think of so many people that would benefit from this possibility so much more than me.
Such a sucky system.
And all I can do is say what; Thank you?
I really should be grateful.
And I am.