Owning vs. Renting

Our goals are simple -- to ensure that you're happy with the home you buy, that you get the best deal you can, and that owning the home helps you to accomplish your financial goals. Most people should eventually buy homes, but not everyone and not at every point in their lives. To decide whether now's the time for you to buy a house, consider the advantages of buying and whether they apply to you.

OWNING SHOULD BE LESS EXPENSIVE THAN RENTING

Here's a guideline that may change the way you view your seemingly cheap monthly rent. In order for you to see how expensive a home you could afford to buy while having the same approximate monthly cost as your current rent, simply do the following calculation: 

Take your monthly rent, multiply by 200 = purchase price of home 

Example: $ 750 x 200 = $150,000

So, in the preceding example, if you were paying rent of $750 per month, you would pay approximately the same amount per month to own a $150,000 home (factoring in tax savings). Now your monthly rent doesn't sound quite so cheap compared to the cost of buying a home, does it? 

Even more important than the cost today of buying versus renting, what about the cost in the future? As a renter, your rent is fully exposed to increases in the cost of living, also known as inflation. A reasonable expectation for annual increases in your rent is 4 percent per year.