My Blog

Should You Rent Or Buy

June 28, 2012 10:48 pm

Location.Just as location is a factor in buying, where you rent is also key.

Buying a house in or near the downtown district of a large city is often more expensive than a suburban home. Because of the growth of the urban infill movement as well as space constraints that gave rise to high-density living years ago, apartments can be more readily available.

"Urban settings are seeing an influx of people who want to be able to live near work and the cultural attractions that you find in a big city," says John McGrail, CEO of Mayo Group.

Ease of relocation. A short-term or month-to-month rental contract is a lot easier to unload than it is to sell a property. What's more, if you sell a property too soon, given the time it takes to accrue equity these days, you could sell at a big loss.

If you are on a career track, planning to move back to your home town to be with family, or just need the flexibility to relocate, buying may not be for you.

Square footage. If you are on the go, career-wise, or just don't spend much time at home, are outdoorsy and travel frequently, a studio apartment or place to sleep may be all you need. If you don't spend much time in your house, a large space will be a waste of space and money.

Job security concerns. Without job security, you need the flexibility to relocate. A homeowner's worst nightmare is losing a job and not being able to quickly find another or being forced to relocate to find another job. In both cases, paying the mortgage or selling the home could be tough.

Defaulting on your mortgage can lead to foreclosure, wrecked credit and high blood pressure. If your employment is shaky, now's not the time to buy. Jobs are tough to come by.

The economy. The soft economy could impact your employment opportunities. It has also prompted lenders to tighten credit. Take a hard look at the local economy where you would like to buy. Renting in a recovering economy can give you time to save for a down payment and put yourself in the best position to buy.

Poor credit. If your credit is trashed, lenders won't approve a mortgage for you. A year or two renting and careful credit use can give you time to boost your credit score and position yourself as a strong homebuyer.

Maintenance. The best homeowners are do-it-yourselfers who don't have to call the plumber every time the sink stops up. In an apartment complex, even a single-family home you might rent, the landlord or property owner direct, or through the building manager or the superintendent, is typically responsible for maintenance.

Your relationship. If your relationship is young or on shaky ground, think about the consequences of buying a home with someone who may be out of the picture weeks, months or even years from now. If you're dependent on two incomes to make the mortgage payments, if there could be a court fight over assets if you split, renting is probably a better deal.

When you share assets in marriage or other relationships a prenuptial or other agreement also may be a good idea.



Why Spring Listings Blossom

May 18, 2012 3:52 pm

Nature is in full bloom across the nation. Many of today’s homeowners are unaware that Spring can be the ultimate time to list a home for sale. From beautiful lawns to temperate weather it’s prime time to lure in buyers.

Spring offers up a wide array of natural beauty. Green lawns, budding roses, and fragrant blossoms treat the eye and nose at every turn. This particular Spring, however, has a leg up on previous years.

Interest rates are still near historic lows, hovering well below 4.0 percent for the 30-year fixed rate mortgage. This translates to favorable terms for eager buyers.

Jobs have begun to return in sectors all across the economy, which equals into a larger pool of eligible and willing buyers. Finally, as home prices have stabilized more homes are now within reach of more buyers. Affordability rates are at generational highs.

Are you a seller who will be looking to buy? Today’s market conditions make for a great time to buy and move up (if you have equity built in your home). Let Springtime showcase your home in the most natural light and “spring” a buyer into action.

Need a reason for selling this season? Consider nature’s paintbrush. Curb appeal is your home’s first impression. Many designers create this by painting the front door or a home or adding a punch of color with , but Spring means that your punches of color need not end at the front step.

Add flower beds around your mailbox, trees, and some to line your walkways. Prune back trees and shrubs to give a neat and orderly appearance.

Finally, take a good, hard look at the exterior of your home. Spring is a good time to break out the paint and give your home a few touch ups. Clean out gutters and clean up any trash.

Next, consider the beautiful weather. Who wants to look at houses during ice and snow? Okay, so there are plenty of buyers who brave those elements, but having an open house or showing during beautiful Spring weather is always a plus. Instead of too hot or too cold your guests will be just right.

Finally, most families prefer to pack up kids when school is taking a break. That means they want to move during the Summer months. What does this mean for sellers? It means families are looking to buy in the Spring. This gives them plenty of time to look at homes and then go to closing, which can take from a few weeks to over a month.

Springtime is full of new growth opportunities. So, stop and smell the roses ... and list that home for sale!