Everyone has a different timeline for when or if they should buy a home. For some people, renting just makes sense. For others, buying a home is something they dream of and work toward.
If you’re on the fence about buying a home, here are a few factors to consider that might help you decide one way or another. Should you buy or continue renting? Here’s what you need to think about.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, median rental rates continue to climb year after year. This is one of the biggest reasons renters decide to become homeowners as buying a home enables you to lock in your rate for the life of the loan. You’ll pay the same amount every month, which is the consistency you can count on.
When you rent, you aren’t allowed to make any permanent changes such as painting or renovating of any kind. In many cases, you can’t even use nails to hang pictures on the walls.
When you own a home, however, you have the freedom to customize it as you see fit and your budget allows.
As a tenant, you have little control over who can enter your home and when. For example, the landlord can enter your apartment at any time in an emergency. When you own a home, you get to say who can or can’t come in and when.
Renting affords flexibility. If you get transferred in your job, renting allows you to pick up and move almost at a moment’s notice. If you own a home, you must sell it first before you can make a life somewhere else.
That said, homes are selling like hotcakes these days as there are fewer homes for sale than demand dictates.
When you’re a tenant, the rent you pay helps earn equity in the home for your landlord. When you own a home yourself, all that equity is yours to use for things like college tuition, renovations, or purchasing a new home in the future.
There are virtually no tax breaks when you rent as your landlord reaps all the benefits. When you own a home, however, you qualify for tax benefits like deduction on your property taxes and mortgage interest.
At the end of the day, the decision to buy a home or keep renting is up to you. The timeline is different for everyone with some people choosing to rent their entire lives. For more information on buying a home, check with a real estate agent in your area.