Home Ownership – Should You Buy or Should You Rent?

Ahh, the controversial subject of buying versus renting. Many of you know where I stand on this topic, but I wanted to share this article with you submitted by a guest contributor that offers a basic, common sense approach. I think the housing crisis has changed a lot of minds about what it means to own a home, but the important thing is that you make the right decision for you and your family. On one hand, right now is a great time to buy a home, but on the other, it might make more sense to rent until your financial situation has prepared you for the American Dream.

Buying Versus Renting Your Home

In today’s market, many are faced with the financial challenges that go along with the various costs of living. In the aftermath of the housing market crash, people are now debating the choice to buy a home versus renting.  This isn’t always an easy decision, especially if you have a family. If you’ve found a house you love it can be heartbreaking not to take that step, but concerns about finances can cause hesitation. Before discounting the prospect of owning a home there are several things you should take into account.

If you’re not certain of the stability of your living situation or if there is a possibility you may need to move, renting might be the best option, especially considering the difficulty of selling property at this time. You’ll have the benefit of not being tied down to any one property and owning a home always has its hidden costs, such as maintenance and repairs. Homeowners insurance, which protect against fire, flood, natural disasters and burglary, is an added cost of owning your home. If you rent, you’ll have more freedom, but you won’t be gaining any equity or value from the money you’re putting towards your monthly payments.  Also, consider that your landlord is able to increase the price of your rent at the end of every lease term.

With the financial incentives available to prospective buyers, owning your own home can be an affordable venture. The benefits of stability, freedom, and the advantages of a long-term investment make this prospect enticing to many buyers. There are government programs out there for existing homeowners trying to stave off foreclosure as well as assistance for trying to buy a home. At this point, the government wants to keep people in their homes. Do some research on the Federal Housing Dept. web site. It offers some great advice for perspective and existing homeowners.

Consider these issues when making the tough decision, whether to rent or buy.  There are online resources to walk you through the process and give you advice on the possible costs you may encounter.

Photo Credit: Alan Cleaver

About Brad Chaffee

4 Responses to “Home Ownership – Should You Buy or Should You Rent?”

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  1. Owning a home can be a blessing and a curse depending upon the families financial situation.

    No one should own a home if they can’t afford it. This is why so many families are in trouble today.

    I do think home ownership should be a priority because of the insecurity renting gives a family.

    1. You never really know the situation of the landlord. I’ve seen multi-million dollar real estate firms file for bankruptcy disrupting their tenants living situation. Or from my own experience…my daughter moved back from Florida and I had a rental property on a month to month lease and I told the tenant that they would have to move so I could give that house to my daughter and my grandson.

    You don’t want decision about your residence in control of anyone else but you and your spouse.

    2. You are contributing to someone’s retirement by paying off their mortgage.

    3. This is the most overlooked part of home ownership during the bad economic times. Even if the value of your home goes down and you pay it off in 10, 15 or even 30 years. You’ll still have an asset to sell or pass down.

    To sum it up get out of debt find a home that you can afford and live in comfort pay it off ASAP.

  2. David Willis says:

    I see merit in both owning and renting. It all depends on the situation you find yourself in. If you have to use “creative financing” (which I believe is Latin for too broke to make the purchase) to get into a home, I don’t think buying is such a good idea. Renting might be the best option in that case. For me and my family, home ownership has been the way to go. We have put down roots and plan to stay where we are for a while. By the time we move we will have fair equity in the house and be in a position to put that into our next home. Thanks for what you do. This is a vital message.

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