Alice-Azania Jarvis: The pitfalls of being a property owner have taken their toll

In The Red

So I'm thinking of selling my flat. Madness, I know, especially after buying it approximately two weeks before the international property market crashed. But what can you do? As it happens, I managed to get a relatively good price (the seller was a friend of a friend, so we didn't need an agent) and, at the time, I was convinced that it was The Only One For Me.

I'm still semi-convinced of the matter; it really is a lovely place, and after a year of drip-drip spending, I've finally managed to get the sitting-room exactly the way I want it (the other rooms have yet to have a cent spent on them, and remain largely unfurnished).

Plus, there's the cosy little selection of restaurants across the road, most of which appear to be in some way linked to the London Buddhist Centre (also across the road): the vegetarian brunch spot, the pescatarian Thai place, and the art-gallery-cum-teashop. All terribly twee I know, though undeniably lovely.

Still, it's there lurking in the back of my mind: the prospect of selling. I'm so far along in the decision-making process as to have asked an estate agent to value the property (pleasingly, he doesn't seem to think I'm going to make an astronomical loss).

The thing is, I'm just not sure I want to own a flat. Obviously, I'm incredibly lucky to be even making that decision (though long-term readers will remember the agonising that went into getting to that particular point). And, obviously, I can see the benefits of owning (primarily, the great big piece of collateral you have waiting for you when you pay off your mortgage). But, as far as I'm concerned, there are a host of disadvantages, too.

Number one, really, is the fact that to lay my hands on that collateral, I'm going to have to do a awful lot of sacrificing along the way. At the moment, my mortgage payments consume the lion's share of my paycheck (when you throw in utilities, student loan repayments, and council tax, it doesn't leave very much to play with).

And I can't, for the life of me, see a time when that's likely to change. True, renting is, in many respects, money down the drain. But at least it would leave me with some money to spend on, uh, food. And, of course, there's the tempting lack of responsibility that comes with renting: the whole call-up-the-landlord-and-get-it fixed mentality.

As recent dealings with the plumbing have confirmed, getting things fixed is not my strong point. So there we have it: my case for getting off the property ladder. Now all I want to know is, anyone interested in buying my flat?

Independent Partners; request a free guide on NISAs from Hargreaves Lansdown

Suggested Topics
New Articles
tvDownton Abbey Christmas special
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
News
news
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvSo Sky Atlantic arrived in Iceland to film their new and supposedly snow-bound series 'Fortitude'...
Arts and Entertainment
Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald in the Doctor Who Christmas special
tvForget the rumours that Clara Oswald would be quitting the Tardis
Arts and Entertainment
Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi showing a small mascot shaped like a vagina
art
News
The Queen delivers her Christmas message
newsTwitter reacts to Her Majesty's Christmas Message
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Life and Style
fashion
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    Selby Jennings: Oil Operations

    Highly Competitive: Selby Jennings: Our client, a leading European Oil trading...

    The Jenrick Group: Night Shift Operations Manager

    £43500 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Night Shift Operatio...

    SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant - LONDON

    £20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000 + Car + Pension: SThree: SThree are a ...

    SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

    £20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35K: SThree: We consistently strive to be the...

    Day In a Page

    A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

    Christmas without hope

    Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
    After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

    The 'Black Museum'

    After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
    No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

    No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

    Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
    Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

    Chilly Christmas

    Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
    Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
    Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

    'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

    Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
    Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

    Ed Balls interview

    'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
    He's behind you, dude!

    US stars in UK panto

    From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

    What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
    Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

    Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

    Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
    Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

    Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

    Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
    Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

    Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

    Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
    Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

    Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

    Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
    Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

    Autism-friendly theatre

    Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all