For the first four years after we got married, my husband and I rented an apartment.
We lived in one of those huge complexes with all sorts of amenities.
We had access to a huge swimming pool and multiple hot tubs. Surrounding the pool was a massive patio area with all sorts of lounge chairs, tables with umbrellas and barbecue grills. There were tennis courts, a state-of-the-art fitness center, game room and conference center. Included in our apartment we had a balcony overlooking the pool, washer and dryer, granite countertops and the most modern stainless steel appliances. The utility bills were included in our rent. We set the thermostat at the ideal temperature and never worried over how much it cost to operate the heating and cooling system. We had no concerns over the reliability of the equipment. If there wasn’t enough hot air coming from the vents, we called maintenance and complained. If the air conditioner was making a weird noise, the maintenance department took care of it. Since we weren’t happy with spending on money instead of investing in something, we bought our own home. We quickly realized that a house is a lot of work and responsibility. Suddenly, the cost of energy bills was important to us. We now adjust the thermostat to conserve energy and suffer with a slightly overheated environment in the summer and rather chilly house in the winter. We’ve signed up for a maintenance plan with a local HVAC contractor and have reminders for filter changes written on the calendar. While it’s nice having our own home, we both miss the conveniences of the apartment building.