To Buy Or To Rent That Is The Question
The biggest question in today's economic situation is "to rent or to buy" when talking about homes. The market is called a buyer's market because there are many choices of houses but let's look at can you afford to buy that home rather than rent. The benefits of owning the home range from slowly purchasing your house instead of paying rent for the permission to live there. With this you have an investment instead of sinking your money into someone else's investment. The first thing to look at is how much of a payment you can make. This will determine the amount of "house" you can buy. What I recommend doing is getting preapproved by a bank or mortgage company for the amount you want to borrow. In today's market you might have to put down up to 25% of the purchase price in addition to closing costs. In addition to closing costs, you will need to pay for a year of home owner's insurance and the prorated taxes for the year at the closing of the house.
There also might be the factor of your credit rating. Currently those with subprime credit are having difficulties getting mortgages to get their first homes and might want to consider alternate purchasing methods such as land contract and rent to own deals. I feel renting is a waste of money unless it is your only option due to short term commitment to an area, bad credit/no credit, or unwilling to take on the house responsibility.