Buying vs Renting Your Home

Posted by Petra Quinn on May 1, 2014 at 8:30 AM

Buying vs Renting Your Home

Is now the right time for you to buy a home? You have many options to consider and choices to make. Buying a home is a big responsibility, financially and emotionally, but, most people want to own a home.

Homeownership often is referred to as "the American dream." Why is it so special? Among the reasons: Real estate often is an excellent investment, perhaps the number one source of wealth building for families.

Owning a home has many benefits. When you make a mortgage payment, you are building equity and that's an investment. Owning a home also qualifies you for tax benefits that may assist you in dealing with your new financial responsibilities such as homeowners' insurance, real estate taxes, and upkeep, which can be substantial. But given the freedom, stability, and security of owning your own home, they are definitely worth it! Owning your own home also can be a great source of pride and stability.

But homeownership may not be for everyone. It's a big financial commitment starting with the initial shock of your purchase (including a "down payment" and fees paid to a real estate agent, the lender and others)

followed by years of monthly mortgage payments, real estate taxes, property insurance, and maintenance costs. When you decide to purchase a home, you accept responsibility for paying for these expenses. They are additional costs to your monthly mortgage payment and should be included in your budget estimates: Property Taxes and Special Assessments, Home/Hazard Insurance, Utilities, Maintenance, Home Owner Association (HOA) Fee if applicable.

One of the advantages of renting is being generally free of most maintenance responsibilities and the flexibility of moving almost as soon as you decide. But by renting, you lose the chance to build equity, take advantage of tax benefits, and protect yourself against rent increases. Also, you may not be free to decorate without permission and may be at the mercy of the landlord for your housing needs.

Home ownership also comes with short and long term tax advantages. The mortgage interest and real estate taxes are tax deductible, which allows you to subtract part of your housing related expenses from your taxable income and could reduce your tax bill. In many cases, the amount of money a renter spends on rent can be about the same as or less than the amount a homeowner spends on a mortgage. With the tax benefit for homeowners, the savings can be significant. 

Buy vs. rent: cost comparison

The chart below shows a cost comparison for a renter and a homeowner over a seven year period. The renter starts out paying $800 per month with annual increases of 5%. The homeowner purchases a home for $180,000 and pays a monthly mortgage of $1,000 (based on a 4% interest rate and 20% down payment). After a year, the homeowner's payment is lower than the renter's monthly payment.

YR Rent Mortgage Monthly Diff. Yearly Diff.
1 800 842 - 42 - 504
2 840 842 + 2 + 24
3 882 842 + 40 + 480
4 926 842 + 84 + 1008
5 972 842 + 130 + 1560

2 - 30 Savings increase every year.

And remember, with taxdeductible interest, you'll save even more!

Want to learn more? Come tour our FREE Home Buyer Happy Hour & Coaching Seminar on May 17th, 2014 at 4.30 pm, call or email for more info

Petra Quinn is a 9 year veteran in the residential real estate business on both sides of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, Anne Arundel & Queen Anne’s County. She has been with EXIT Gold Realty in Stevensville MD since 2009. Petra specializes in listing and selling single family homes as well as 1st Time Homebuyers and out of town relocations. Petra is also an active board member of C.A.S.A. for Children of Queen Anne’s and Kent County since 2012. You can reach Petra best on her cell phone at 443-600-1986, or via email Petra@EXITGoldRealty.com. EXIT GOLD REALTY is located at 1241 Shopping Center Road, The broker, Debbie Houck, can be reached at the office under 410-643-4111.

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