The Costs of Buying vs. Renting
It's difficult to know if you're ready to buy a home. Everyone seems to be pushing you in one direction or another, but what are the bottom-line deciding factors? We’re mapping it out for you…
One benefit of renting is maintenance issues fall on the landlord.
There is a lot to be said when you don't have to spend your days repairing your leaking faucet or mowing the grass. You can notify your landlord to fix the issue or submit a service request. But if you’re ready to take on the responsibility, most people use a rule of $1 per square foot per year for maintenance. For example, let’s say you buy a 1,600 sq ft home. You’re looking at $1,600 per year for maintenance. There are programs that homeowners use called Home Warranties, that act like health insurance for your home. If you spring a leak, you call the Home Warranty and they send someone out for a co-pay to take care of the problem.
You may need a permanent place to call home, or want the flexibility to move around.
Taking a job on the other side of town? Pack up and get closer to work. Renters don’t have to commit longterm to a location, so if you dream of living in different cities or enjoy a change of scenery, renting would be ideal. But maybe you really dislike moving and yearn to find stability. If you’re someone ready to plant roots, becoming a homeowner may make the most sense.
You either enjoy the flexibility to create your own home oasis, or enjoy the community amenities.
Instead of putting in a private pool in your backyard or your own gym equipment in an extra room, you can enjoy the luxury of a pool maintained by the complex, share gym access in a workout room, extra work space, clubhouse for entertaining guests, etc. This is all available to you if you are renting an apartment or house in a community with amenities. Plus, if you're new to the area, it's a great way to meet other people in your complex/neighborhood!
The difference in cost between owning a home and renting fluctuates by the years.
It’s best to consult a real estate expert for the latest data so you can make an educated decision. In either case, maybe you need to work on finances before buying a home, such as building up credit or saving for a down payment. Renting is also a great option if you are new to the area and want to spend 6 months to 1 year to get a feel of your new city. In some cases, you may be paying a little more than you would be on a mortgage, but let’s be real–it's a great avenue in certain situations.
The bottom line.
If you’ve ever toyed with the idea of owning a home, our experts are here to help you weigh the good and the bad. One thing’s for sure–if renting is your best option, we’ll tell you. But in many cases, it’s best to game plan with a guide to be sure, rather than running on assumptions.
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