Should you continue to rent a home in 2018 or is it time to buy? If you have just moved to a community, renting — at least initially — may be a better option as you get to know different neighborhoods. How stable is your employment? Buying could make more sense right now if you aren’t thinking about switching jobs, your employer is not reducing its workforce or if your company isn’t planning to move you to a different city or state.
How long do you plan to remain in your home? Generally, the more time you plan to live in a house, the more sense it makes to buy. The U.S. Breakeven Horizon, compiled by real estate website Zillow.com, is designed to provide an estimated number of years one needs to live in a home for buying to make more sense than renting. Factors such as expected growth in rents and home values, price-to-rent ratios and mortgage interest rates are included in the analysis. Nationally, that figure is 1.8 years. For a look at the Breakeven Horizon in the area you are thinking of buying, go to this link.
While a variety of factors may sway the buy-versus-rent decision, there’s one that continues to make buying a home so attractive: Historically low mortgage rates. Take a look at average mortgage rates since 1971, and you’ll see that today’s rates are extremely favorable. Low mortgage rates help families stretch their home-buying dollars.