Why I gave up my life-long dream of buying a house

Published: November 16, 2021 at 7:00 am

In this article, Vishal discusses why he decided against buying a house and how his mindset towards owning property changed over the years.

Note: The following is a point of view and not a recommendation against buying property. It is worth sharing it with the freefincal community as it is a well-thought-out view suitable for Vishal’s circumstances.

My family has lived in rented accommodation for all our lives. Buying a house was my parent’s dream. It became mine too as I realized the pain of paying rent, tacking landlords and constant moving. Unfortunately, I did not do well in school and struggled to get into college. I did several jobs after graduation, and none of them paid enough to service a loan. My parents passed away in quick succession, and I regret not earning enough within their lifetime to fulfil their dreams.

I wish the young earners reading this have better luck than me in fulfilling their parent’s dream. My view about buying a house has changed a lot due to my particular circumstances. I am not trying to claim that renting is better or one should delay buying a house. It is an extremely personal decision, and as Pattu sir often says, it must be planned holistically after considering our long-term goals, particularly retirement.

After their death, I felt a big change. As an only child, I felt I no longer had any roots anywhere. Soon I got an opportunity to work in the Dubai hospitality industry. It allowed me to work my way up the corporate ladder and learn to speak and write proper English.


I thought I would be homesick when I went there but realized I had no “home” anymore. Soon I got married and had two children. I was posted in Hong Kong for three years while my family stayed in Dubai. Then I realized home has nothing to do with real estate. If you are with your family, you are home.

After we became parents, both my wife and I started learning personal finance and stumbled upon freefincal before making any big investment decision. It was a game-changer for us.

Retirement planning and our children’s future became our number one priority. We regularly started investing for these goals and accumulated enough within eight years (thanks to our double income).

At this stage, we thought about buying property in India for future use but did not due to our son. Our daughter is outgoing and raring to be independent after school. Our younger son is a loner. He loves fine arts and is quite creative but does not socialize much. He is likely to be unhappy if he relocates to study alone. Worried that it might disrupt his education, we have decided to move wherever he chooses to study. We believe he would need our physical presence for a few more years.

This has again changed our mindset toward owning property. We may need to support our son for  5-6 years after school, by which time I will be almost 55 and my wife 54. At that stage, we could buy a retirement villa to spend the evening of our lives or travel living in service apartments or even hotels.

My journey has made me realize the difference between a house and a home. Home is where your loved ones are. Not having a house makes us that much more flexible to cater to the needs of our children.

I want to conclude by saying that having a piece of land or space that we can call our own is extremely important, but we need not define happiness with it. Buying a house was and is my lifelong dream, but life had other plans for me. Thankfully, our regular investments have made us financially secure to tackle these changes.

Do share if you found this useful

Use our Robo-advisory Excel Template for a start-to-finish financial plan! Now with a new demo video!  More than 700 investors and advisors use this!
Our flagship course! Learn to manage your portfolio like a pro to achieve your goals regardless of market conditions! More than 2600 investors and advisors are part of our exclusive community! Get clarity on how to plan for your goals and achieve the necessary corpus no matter what the market condition is!! Watch the first lecture for free!  One-time payment! No recurring fees! Life-long access to videos! Reduce fear, uncertainty and doubt while investing! Learn how to plan for your goals before and after retirement with confidence.
Our new course!  Increase your income by getting people to pay for your skills! More than 600 salaried employees, entrepreneurs and financial advisors are part of our exclusive community! Learn how to get people to pay for your skills! Whether you are a professional or small business owner who wants more clients via online visibility or a salaried person wanting a side income or passive income, we will show you how to achieve this by showcasing your skills and building a community that trusts you and pays you! (watch 1st lecture for free). One-time payment! No recurring fees! Life-long access to videos!   
My new book for kids: “Chinchu gets a superpower!” is now available!
Both boy and girl version covers of Chinchu gets a superpower
Both boy and girl version covers of Chinchu gets a superpower.
Most investor problems can be traced to a lack of informed decision making. We have all made bad decisions and money mistakes when we started earning and spent years undoing these mistakes. Why should our children go through the same pain? What is this book about? As parents, if we had to groom one ability in our children that is key not only to money management and investing but for any aspect of life, what would it be? My answer: Sound Decision Making. So in this book, we meet Chinchu, who is about to turn 10. What he wants for his birthday and how his parent’s plan for it and teach him several key ideas of decision making and money management is the narrative. What readers say!
Feedback from a young reader after reading Chinchu gets a Superpower (small version)
Feedback from a young reader after reading Chinchu gets a Superpower!
Must-read book even for adults! This is something that every parent should teach their kids right from their young age. The importance of money management and decision making based on their wants and needs. Very nicely written in simple terms. - Arun.
Buy the book: Chinchu gets a superpower for your child!
How to profit from content writing: Our new ebook for those interested in getting side income via content writing. It is available at a 50% discount for Rs. 500 only!
Did you know? We have more than 1000+ videos on YouTube to explore! Join our YouTube Community!

Want to check if the market is overvalued or undervalued? Use our market valuation tool (will work with any index!), or you buy the new Tactical Buy/Sell timing tool!
We publish mutual fund screeners and momentum, low volatility stock screeners .every month.
About the Author Pattabiraman editor freefincalM. Pattabiraman(PhD) is the founder, managing editor and primary author of freefincal. He is an associate professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. since Aug 2006. Connect with him via Twitter or Linkedin Pattabiraman has co-authored three print books, You can be rich too with goal-based investing (CNBC TV18), Gamechanger, Chinchu Gets a Superpower! and seven other free e-books on various money management topics. He is a patron and co-founder of “Fee-only India,” an organisation to promote unbiased, commission-free investment advice. He conducts free money management sessions for corporates and associations based on money management. Previous engagements include World Bank, RBI, BHEL, Asian Paints, Cognizant, Madras Atomic Power Station, Honeywell, Tamil Nadu Investors Association, IIST Alumni Association. For speaking engagements, write to pattu [at] freefincal [dot] com
About freefincal & its content policy Freefincal is a News Media Organization dedicated to providing original analysis, reports, reviews and insights on developments in mutual funds, stocks, investing, retirement and personal finance. We do so without conflict of interest and bias. Follow us on Google News. Freefincal serves more than three million readers a year (5 million page views) with articles based only on factual information and detailed analysis by its authors. All statements made will be verified from credible and knowledgeable sources before publication. Freefincal does not publish any paid articles, promotions, PR, satire or opinions without data. All opinions presented will only be inferences backed by verifiable, reproducible evidence/data. Contact information: letters {at} freefincal {dot} com (sponsored posts or paid collaborations will not be entertained)
Connect with us on social media
Our publications

You Can Be Rich Too with Goal-Based Investing

You can be rich too with goal based investingPublished by CNBC TV18, this book is meant to help you ask the right questions, seek the correct answers, and since it comes with nine online calculators, you can also create custom solutions for your lifestyle! Get it now. It is also available in Kindle format.
Gamechanger: Forget Startups, Join Corporate & Still Live the Rich Life You Want Gamechanger: Forget Start-ups, Join Corporate and Still Live the Rich Life you wantThis book is meant for young earners to get their basics right from day one! It will also help you travel to exotic places at a low cost! Get it or gift it to a young earner.

Your Ultimate Guide to Travel

Travel-Training-Kit-Cover-new This is an in-depth dive analysis into vacation planning, finding cheap flights, budget accommodation, what to do when travelling, how travelling slowly is better financially and psychologically with links to the web pages and hand-holding at every step. Get the pdf for Rs 199 (instant download)
Free android apps