• Should I Rent or Buy

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    Because the housing market continues to be a buyer’s market, it’s tempting for buyers to want to buy a home instead of paying rent, but in some situations, buying is not the smartest option.

    Homeowners can claim tax benefits by writing off mortgage interest and property taxes but they may also have to take into account hidden expenses of home ownership such as Home Owner’s Association dues and home repair costs. Additionally, some expenses such as trash collection and water services that are now included in rental costs will be budgeted for as a homeowner.

    The best way to decide if homeownership is in the cards for you is to use a mortgage calculator. This handy tool will help you decide if now is the best time for the purchase of a home.

    • Renting Might Be Your Best Bet

    Clearly, owning a home is a dream for many people but the benefits of renting are clearer than ever after the mortgage meltdown. Renting assumes less risk and responsibility and is the right choice for you at this time in your life.

    Renters don’t assume liability for costly home repairs such as new roofs or plumbing issues. They also don’t have to pay for many of the monthly bills such as water and trash or Home Owner’s Association dues.

    If your job situation is unstable or you are relocating, renting may yield more benefits because you won’t have to worry about selling your home in a saturated, sluggish market. In most parts of the country, and in today’s weak housing market, you’ll likely not be able to recoup your costs for several years to make a profit on a home.

    Instead of purchasing a home, you should take this time to pay off debts and save for a down payment. Work on raising your credit score by paying bills on time and by obtaining steady employment so when the time is right for you to jump into the housing market you’ll have lots of options available to you.

    • Rent-To-Own The Unconventional Road to Ownership

    Prospective buyers with less-than-stellar odds in their favor – such as bad credit or no money to put down – may find that a rent-to-own option is a way for them to get a foot in the door of this affordable housing market.

    While rent-to-own may allow you to get your foot in the door, it’s likely that you’ll enter through the back door. There are consequences and risks associated with this unconventional approach.

    There is a multitude of websites claiming they can arrange for a rent-to-own situation. Be sure to check them out and make sure their claims are legitimate. Next, take any contracts drawn up for you to a real estate attorney to check. Typically a contract states that you pay a rental fee, plus an extra fee that will become your down payment at the end of the contract in several years. At that time you can buy the home for an agreed-upon amount.

    Be sure you understand all the fees and what they go towards before you sign on the dotted line. Additionally, be sure you can afford to make these payments and what the consequences are at the end of the contract if you choose to not buy the home.

    If you are struggling to sell read more here