We’ve been in our house now for almost two years. Prior to that I was in an apartment for three. When we first looked into buying a place, we tossed up between house vs apartment. Having had a dog and share-situations in Oz, I’ve always lived in houses, but Thomas, having lived longer alone, had always been an apartment-dweller.
So house vs apartment… what’s the verdict? I’m still pro-house, and Thomas is slowly coming around.
Yet an apartment feels safer
Whether it’s the fact it’s smaller, the neighbours are closer, or just because there’s an extra barrier separating your front door from the street, somehow living in an apartment always felt safer to me. I felt a lot more comfortable alone than I do in my huge house.
But a house is so much quieter
These days, I don’t share a wall with anyone… except hubby. My balcony doesn’t butt up to anyone else’s. Nobody elephant-walks loud footsteps above. Sure, we have neighbours, but they’re over there – out of sight out of mind. When you’re in an apartment you could face the prospect of someone having a noisy party every other weekend, when you’re in a house, it’s much less frequent.
An apartment is cheaper
Not necessarily the rent, but being smaller, the utilities, especially heating, are generally less. Our old apartment was segregated into small rooms, which meant we heated the kitchen and the living room… and that was all. In the house, we have to keep the whole thing heated a little to keep the pipes warm and discourage mould… our house also features larger spaces – the kitchen connects to the dining room – more heating = more money.
But with a house, the walk to the car is reduced and there’s no parking issues
I might live further away from the autobahn now, but if you take into account the time it took to walk from my apartment block to my car each morning, I barely lose any time. And if I have a lot of stuff to carry, my car is right there. We now have a garage and an under-cover parking spot, which means both cars are protected from the elements, and we no longer have to fight with other residents for the last spots!
The apartment is easier to move around in
In an apartment, if you forget something in the bedroom, no problem! A few steps, and you’re there. Need the toilet? It’s right there too. Want to grab a snack when you’re lying on the couch? No hassle! In a house, everything is bigger, so all of these moments are amplified. From your comfy spot on the couch it feels arduous to have to go the kitchen and grab a drink. And don’t even get me started about when I’m downstairs and forget something that’s upstairs. Upstairs – downstairs – upstairs – downstairs.
But the extra room of a house is amazing
We only have four bedrooms (snort)… plus a study, plus a workout room. And two toilets. That makes for a lot of space. That means hubby and I both have our own designated rooms we use for work or just to have some quiet time alone. I have a writing room, he has a computer room. It’s also great when people come to stay. We technically now have two guest rooms, so when friends or family come by, it’s not too squeezy!
But the apartment was so much easier to clean
The apartment, being smaller, was a dream to clean. An hour every two weeks, if that. Only one toilet – a smaller bathroom – and almost 100m² less floor space to worry about. The house requires a lot more work. And even though we have a lot of our rooms closed off so they don’t require frequent cleaning, they still get dusty and require the odd go-over.
But I can stay in my pyjamas so much longer
On weekends, I like to be in pyjamas for as long as possible. Till lunch time sometimes! And if I do need to go outside for some reason in that time, to hang the washing for example, a house means I can do that without changing into an outfit suitable for everyone in the apartment block to see. Cause I’m in my space, not communal space, so I’ll do what I want!
But more space means more stuff
In the apartment, we only had 80m² plus a small room in the basement for storage. That means that moving from the apartment to the house was relatively easy – although Thomas has lived in the apartment for many years, there was a limit to how much he could horde. In a house, with a massive cellar beneath, hording is so much easier. Random piece of wood? Let’s keep it, just in case. Old kitchen implements? We have room, put them in the cellar. Out of sight means out of mind, and that is not a good thing!
Having a garden
Having a house means having a garden. Yes, that translates to more work, but I think the benefits outweight the disadvantages. From growing vegetables, to not having to worry if you’re taking up too much clothesline space, to doing an outdoor workout away from curious eyes, having a garden is probably my favourite thing about having a house.