To Rent or to Own?
At some point in your life, you will make the decision as to rent or own the place where you will live. This is never an easy choice, and there are a number of factors that support renting as well as owning.
As a renter, you will sign a lease to live in a property for a certain period, usually one year. The lease may contain restrictions on how you might be able to alter the home, or own pets. You will pay a designated amount of rent to your landlord, and that rent is subject to annual increases. While some utilities, such as heat, and water, may be included in your lease, you may be expected to pay electric, gas and cable TV bills.
As a homeowner, you bear new responsibilities, but enjoy many benefits. You must accumulate sufficient cash for a down payment, and be approved for a mortgage. You will need to find a lender that will provide you with the best mortgage package for your needs. You, not your landlord, will pay all utility and property tax bills. You will be responsible for all maintenance. However, in buying a home, you will typically see your home equity grow as you pay down your mortgage. Homeowners usually qualify for certain tax deductions, too. Property values tend to increase in the long run, and you may be able to achieve a profit should you decide to sell the home. Finally, there is a pride of ownership and freedom that comes from purchasing a home.
To determine whether you are currently best suited to rent or own, talk with a qualified realtor or lender. Both will help you develop a plan that will suit your needs, now and in the future.