Last updated: Buy vs. rent – a homeowner’s view on the eternal debate about on premise software vs. on demand software

Buy vs. rent – a homeowner’s view on the eternal debate about on premise software vs. on demand software


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The latest ‘trend’ to come along in the world of software is on demand.

Customers love it because they think they get everything cheaper and faster, and investors love it because it secures a company’s long-term revenue. On demand companies never tire of insisting that everything they do is in the interest of their customers.

Well, if you believe that one, then you must also believe that when renting an apartment landlords only do what is in the best interest of their tenants.

From where I stand, most purchases in life make sense at a certain time within a specific context. For example, right out of college you might not be financially ready to buy a house therefore renting a place makes the most sense. The same mechanisms are at work with software. The names are just different – we call it on demand when you rent software and on premise when you own it.

Although renting allows for more flexibility in terms of how long you stay at one location and less responsibility for the maintenance and upkeep of the home – you also do not have the liberty to make the modifications to the home to improve the investment. You are paying someone else’s mortgage and helping them on their ROI – not yours. Same with on demand software.

That said, when owning a home you may still have to task someone with maintaining the up keep of the house and you hire staff to help you with keeping it tidy. The bottom line is – you own it. The investment is yours. You can do what you want and what you think is right to increase the value of your investment.

Same applies to on premise software – you own it. And the names of the folks you task to help with the maintenance and upkeep are just different. Your maintenance company is the management services team and your housecleaners are the business consultants.

Just as there are pros and cons with renting vs. buying a home the same apply to software. So when you are deciding on whether to go on demand (rent) or on premise (own) there is only one question you should ask yourself…who will allow me to be more successful myself of my landlord?

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