First Home Facts

Should You Keep Renting Or Start Buying?

The decision of when to start looking to buy a house is one that many renters contemplate for a long time before they decide to buy. Here are some questions that you can ask yourself if you are still undecided.

How Long Do You Plan to Stay?

First of all, how long do you plan to stay in your new home? Is the surrounding area one that you can see yourself in in ten years? While you may love the place now, you should also make sure that it will offer the things you may value in ten years or more. You want to find a community that you can grow with.

What's Your Financial Situation Like?

Another thing to look at is your personal financial situation. For instance, how stable is your career path in this area, and does your area offer other job opportunities? Job and income stability will be a factor in how safe it is to take out a mortgage. But you must also weigh the impact of other personal debts and future expenses, such as medical bills and child-rearing or helping out an aging loved one.

What Do Your Renter's and Buyer's Markets Look Like?

Even though the national economy plays a role in the housing markets, there are also local trends to be aware of. In some areas, the rental market is flooded with people who are eager to sign the one-year lease. This is common in places where a lot of young professionals are moving in, since many of them aren't ready for the commitment of buying a home in the area. They may only be there for a year or a few years. If you are in an area like this, you have very steep competition to find the best rentals and you might be paying a premium for renting. Buying a home would be the better option, and then you could potentially become the landlord if you decide to rent out rooms.

On the other hand, some areas attract young families or couples that want to buy a house to grow into. While these areas can be very competitive for home buying, that kind of demand speaks to growth for the area in the future. It could be a good investment to get in on one of these properties early and hope that the home's value continues to increase over the years.

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