Purchasing a home is often named as a good way to build wealth, but it comes with a lot of work — more than 10 hours a week of housework to be exact.
Apartment List, an apartment rental website, analyzed data pulled from the American Time Use Survey (a survey that collects data on every activity respondents engage in during the day) to find out how renters and homeowners differ when it comes to divvying up their time.
They found that on average, homeowners spend 90 minutes per day on household activities, such as chores, maintenance and yard work. That's 630 minutes per week, or over 10 hours. By comparison, Apartment List found that renters spend an average 67 minutes a day doing similar household activities, which is 7.8 hours a week.
For renters, that's 23 minutes per day less than homeowners, which adds up to 161 minutes a week saved. Apartment List points out that's 141 hours, or almost six days, over the course of a year; so homeowners spend the equivalent of three and half additional (40-hour) work weeks per year taking care of their homes.
Specifically, Apartment List found that per week, renters save 56 minutes on lawn and yard care, 32 minutes on maintenance and repairs, 23 minutes on housework and 21 minutes on food prep.
However that didn't lead to much difference in recreational activities: Both renters and homeowners spend an average of 20 minutes per day on sports and exercise, while homeowners spend an average 42 minutes per day on socializing and entertainment and renters spend 46.
And "controlling for age, sex, race, income, marital status, and the presence of children in the household," the numbers were slightly different but still "statistically significant," the analysis notes, "with renters spending 14 fewer minutes per day on [overall] household activities in our model."
Of course, time spent working around the house is just one consideration among many. Another important one? Money.
"As a renter, you can easily spend half a million dollars or more on rent over the years ($1,500 a month for 30 years comes to $540,000), and in the end wind up just where you started — owning nothing," David Bach writes in his bestselling book, "The Automatic Millionaire. "
"Or you can buy a house and spend the same amount paying down a mortgage, and in the end wind up owning your own home free and clear!"
"Let's be honest: Renters make landlords rich," Bach previously told CNBC Make It. "I want you to make yourself rich, so start by saving money for a down payment now. "
For the study, Apartment List's sample data was limited to prime working age adults (25 to 54) who are employed full-time with a household income of at least $50,000. Over 12,000 responses gathered from 2013 through 2017 were included.
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