When we become adults — no jokes please, wink, wink — one of the universal passage rites is deciding whether to buy a home or rent one. Adulthood conveys stability and security. The financial means to make such a large purchase and keep it long enough to establish valuable equity (equity is like magic financial pixie dust, but more on that much later).
It’s also the American Dream, so lots of emotional and psychological thingies work on us too, when we contemplate where and how we want to live long-term. What does our home base look like to us? How do we feel about it?
Helping to muddy the decision is that buying-versus-renting is one of those chicken-and-egg arguments that can alienate or endear you at parties. You’ll find no end of pro and con situations being debated constantly, depending on the day’s economic climate, in various forms of print, online and broadcast media: “rent in this situation, buy in this one.”
We at ICI Homes are kicking off Part 1 of our five-part Buying Versus Renting series with the positivity that home ownership is well worth the preparation and planning it requires. We’re happy to explain why, then guide you through some of its processes.
If you’re a renter (secretly calling baloney on us), that’s okay. Do what you need to in today’s life phase, then meet us back here for Parts 2, 3, 4, and 5 once you’re ready to think about home ownership. We’ll wait for you!
Renting isn’t a bad thing, only temporary
Very few folks don’t pay rent at some point in their lives. Remember your first apartment during your first real-world job, trade-school tenure or that gap year between high school and college? The unit you shared with six roommates? All photographic evidence was destroyed, right?
We’re having a little fun, but yes, there are life stages that encourage renting. A career that keeps you on the move, for example. A stringent personal budget that must be strengthened. Even if you’re in a rent cycle and can’t yet buy a home, don’t let that lower lip sag. You can plan now for a future purchase. Use your current renter’s status as a spur to do some research and sketch out a financial and personal road map toward home ownership.
Buying a home is an investment in you
If you do it wisely, owning a home is one of the most beneficial long-term investments you can make, regardless of fluctuating financial markets. Economic whims can affect its value positively and negatively, or cause you to hit pause on a major renovation or addition, but such storms pass. They also become easier to weather once you establish equity (that word again).
You can attain home ownership step-by-step
You don’t have to panic over finances, debt or life situations if they currently preclude you from buying a home. You do have to deal with your life situations — we can’t help with that. But you can work toward home ownership, and within your financial, family and career priorities by learning what ownership requires, and how you can marshal resources for it.
In Part II of Buying Versus Renting, we’ll talk about financial factors (like equity).
Ready to buy a new custom home? ICI Homes can help. Start here.