Since the beginning of home buying, there has been an on-going debate among renters and homebuyers over which is the better option. And there comes a point in everyone’s life when they are forced to ask themselves the age-old question, “should I rent or buy?”
While buying a home is typically the better long-term investment, it does not necessarily mean that buying is the best decision for everyone. To help you decide whether or not you should buy a home, consider asking yourself these simple questions.
- Are you sticking around?
If you are secure in your job and the life you have established, it may be time to start planting some more roots and buy a home. However, if you are unsure of which city you will be in the next five years or so, renting will give you the flexibility to pick up and move more easily.
- Maintenance or no maintenance?
For those who are able and willing to take on the responsibility of handling a home’s maintenance and upkeep, buying a home can be a solid investment. However, if you enjoy passing off maintenance responsibilities to an owner or landlord, renting may be the better way to go.
- Do you want freedom to turn your house into a home?
When you rent, you are typically limited in what you can and cannot change about your living space. The owner has all of the control. But when you are the owner, you have the freedom to make any and all changes you want, so your house can truly feel like your home.
- Do you want stable payments?
One of the downsides to renting is that your monthly payments can increase at any time – unless you are in a rent-controlled place, which is not very common. When you buy a home, your monthly mortgage payments are locked in for life, allowing you to better plan for the future financially.
Another way to determine if you are ready to buy a home is to consider whether or not you fit the following criteria:
- You plan on being in your home at least five years
- You will spend less than 30% of monthly gross income on housing expenses
- Your after-tax mortgage payment is roughly equal to your rent
If any of those criteria fit your situation, it may be time to take the leap and buy a home.
Still unsure if homeownership is right for you? Talk to one of our experts today.