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Numbers Count: 3 reasons to buy & 3 reasons to rent

Chad Royle
Posted by Chad Royle
Mortgage Banking

Numbers count. They matter to bankers and to prospective homebuyers, sellers, and real estate professionals. Here’s my take on the key numbers on the housing market this week.

The numbers: Interest in buying homes dips

Woman leaning against a wall with reflective look on her face, with an empty white room behind her.The share of consumers who say they would buy a home if they were to move decreased 5% last month to just 60%, according to results from Fannie Mae’s March National Housing Survey released April 7. The percent of respondents interested in buying was at the lowest point in the survey’s 5-year history.

What counts: Buy-versus-rent is always a big decision. People’s circumstances vary, of course, but this latest survey is a good reminder to weigh the potential pros and cons of either decision. Here are a few things I recommend people consider when deciding whether it’s a good time to buy or rent:

Why Buy?
  1. You may build equity in your home as you pay down your mortgage or if your home appreciates.
  2. There may be tax benefits to having a mortgage, but you should consult a tax advisor to discuss your particular circumstances.
  3. There’s pride of ownership and the ability to invest in a home you own — painting, planting trees and shrubs, replacing windows, or remodeling the kitchen, for example.
Why Rent?
  1. Depending on the house, it may be less expensive to rent. As a renter, you don’t have to pay the potential expenses that come with ownership, such as property taxes and homeowners insurance.
  2. You don’t have to worry about maintenance costs. When you rent, your landlord typically handles maintenance and repairs.
  3. It may be easier for you to relocate if you are renting. Selling a home can take time, so if you think you may be moving for a new job or other reasons in the foreseeable future, you may want to think twice before investing in owning a home.
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