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Buy vs. Rent

One of the most commonly asked questions realtors receive is “considering my current financial situation, should I buy or rent?” There is no singular, short, or definitive answer to this question since every situation is different, however we tell our clients that in most cases it makes more sense to buy rather than rent. Here are some of the common reasons why people delay buying:

“Don’t I need to have a 20% down payment saved?”

You don’t always have to put 20% down to purchase a home. In fact, the majority of homeowners in the United States purchase their homes with less than 20% down. There are several loan programs that allow you to put as little as 3% down, and in some (rare) cases you can even purchase a home with zero cash out of pocket. So before you decide to rent because you think you do not have enough cash saved, talk to a realtor or a loan officer to find out your options so you can make an informed decision.

“Isn’t renting cheaper than buying?”

Not necessarily, sometimes paying a mortgage can be cheaper than or comparable to paying rent. And as discussed in the last objection, check with a lender to see what your mortgage payment would be and what price range you qualify to purchase. Wouldn’t you rather pay your own mortgage than someone else’s?

“Aren’t the rates too high, shouldn’t I wait?”

Seemingly high rates often detract buyers from purchasing real estate because the higher the rate, the higher the monthly payment. However, what potential buyers forget sometimes is that when you pay rent you are paying 100% interest. So rather than putting your money toward someone else’s mortgage and investing 0% of your living costs, buying real estate allows you to turn this necessary fee into a stable, long-term investment. Additionally, the mortgage rate you pay at closing can always be refinanced if the rates go down.

“I want to save until I can buy my forever home”

This is a common hesitation for first time home buyers. They know they cannot afford the house of their dreams so they wait until they have saved enough money. This is one approach however, there’s another way that could save you more money in a shorter period of time. If you purchase what you can afford now – converting your monthly rental payment into a mortgage payment – instead of paying rent you are slowly building equity in your investment. As your home appreciates and you pay down your mortgage, you are investing your monthly living fee (that otherwise would have been paying off someone else’s mortgage). After you have saved up some additional funds, you can purchase your dream home with those funds in addition to the equity you have accumulated. Or, keep your first home purchase as a rental property instead of rolling your investment over, and make passive income on top of living in your dream home! There are many options, but the most important thing to note is waiting to buy your dream home might not be the best financial decision.

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