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By Susan Pryor and Elliot Dubin
Everyone has been hearing all the news about the up and downs in the housing market in recent years. Couples that are getting married have to decide whether to rent or buy with the last few years as a backdrop. The good news is that housing prices are still significantly discounted and interest rates are still historically low. But how do you decide if you want to buy or rent?
The first consideration is how long you think you will be in the home. If you expect to be in an area for more than five years, it can make a lot of sense to buy. If not, the costs of selling your home would likely outweigh the benefits of buying a home. When selling a home, you pay your real estate agent around 7 percent of the home price. Additionally, you might pay some closing costs and do some repairs for the buyer of your home.
As with most questions of finance and major choices, the answer is always about what works for your circumstances. Like shopping for a dress, what works for you is the important issue, and everyone is different.
In doing a financial comparison of buying versus renting, remember that there is also an emotional component to consider. Ask yourself, would you enjoy having a home that you could decorate and make your own? Or are you someone who will completely panic if a light fixture breaks and you have to figure out how to get it fixed?
Before beginning your home search, it is best to speak with a professional loan officer. It is never too early to look at your credit and find out if you are qualified to buy a home. A good loan officer will tell you what you need to do to qualify (if you are not ready) and can talk to you about monthly payments and down payments so you have an idea what you are getting into. In the current market, you might be able to buy for less than your monthly rent expense.
Financial Benefits of Owning a Home:
When buying a home, you have to do what is best for you and your current or future family. If you plan to stay in your area for more than five years, call a mortgage professional to find out your options. If you decide you want to be a homeowner, move quickly. Housing prices and interest rates are remarkably low, making this a great time to buy.
Susan Pryor is a Branch Manager of Silverton Mortgage Specialists and the Radio Show Host of Real Estate Radio Atlanta on 106.7 FM. She can be contacted at email@example.com or 678-738-0516.
Elliot Dubin is a license loan originator with Silverton Mortgage Specialists. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 404-601-4148.