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The Benefits Of Renting Versus Owning

Mar 1, 2008
Because of current housing conditions that are currently taking place many people believe that no one should buy a home, at least not soon. That is simply not true. There are some issues that home buyers should watch out for, but those issues, such as sub-prime loans, can be avoided by many working people who have good credit histories.

Another truth is that owning a home today can be just as affordable as renting in many areas of the nation. With falling home prices, the time to buy could never be better.

Here are some things to think about when you are considering buying a home.

Buying a home allows you to begin building equity in the home. As you pay off the mortgage you begin to increase your wealth in the home. This is never true with renting.

You will be allowed to take advantage of tax deductions that renters do not have access to. Mortgage interest is tax deductible per the current IRS code.

Monthly mortgage payments under a fixed rate loan are fairly steady, while a landlord can easily increase your rent.

Homeownership allows you to put down roots in a community and become a part of that community. It lets you buy into the American dream.

There are some drawbacks to homeownership as well.

Maintenance costs will be your responsibility. These costs will have to come out of your pocket and the work will have to be done by you or someone you hire.

During the first years of owning the home it may difficult to sell if you find yourself needing to do so. This can tie up your cash significantly. Also, it is not nearly as easy to simply pack up and move on, as some people like to do.

Your property can increase or decrease in value because of conditions that you have no control over. For example, if foreclosures take place near to your home, your home loses value. Not fair, but that is the way it is.

Building equity is usually considered one of the main reasons to own a home. In fact, for many American, homeownership is the only way they can build substantial wealth. Equity is easy to understand. As time passes and you pay your monthly mortgage an increasing amount of that money goes toward paying down the principle. This means that over time you have more of a share in the home in real dollar value. Later on, you can borrow from this equity if you wish to do so. This borrowing power can be a huge benefit for those who pay their bills on time and find they need credit in the future.

Owning a home also allows you to deduct mortgage interest and property taxes from your federal income taxes and some state income taxes. This is not small change for most people. These deductions can mean big tax savings, especially in the early years of the loan when interest makes up most of the payment. In fact, you may find that with the tax deductions it is actually cheaper to buy a home than it is to rent. You can find current tax law on homeownership at various online sources or through a qualified tax advisor.

Lastly, having a home also allows you to feel more secure in knowing that your family will have a place to live. When you rent from someone else, you may not always be able to renew your lease.
About the Author
Peter Kenny is a writer for The Thrifty Scot, please visit us at Mortgages and Remortgages
Visit Making the most of your equity
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