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Being single is a special time in a person’s life. There are many ways to appreciate yourself when being single- one of those ways is finding a property that matches your desires and needs without having to worry about meeting the expectations of a romantic partner.
There are plenty of situations where a single person is looking for a new property. For example, perhaps you are looking for the first property that you rent/own on your own, or maybe you are newly divorced with children, looking to find a nice place and a fresh start.
Either way, having the freedom to choose where you live can be an awesome experience. However, one important question to ask yourself when you start this journey is “should I rent our buy”?
I cannot give you a direct answer or whether you specifically should rent or buy a home. However, I can offer advice during the process. So don’t worry, you don’t have to make this decision independently. We are here to provide you with our best advice!
Whether you are buying or home or renting, being fully aware of your financial situation and what you can afford is the first step to your big decision.
To determine how much you can financially afford in monthly housing payments, start by adding up all of your bills. Remember that owning a home means covering all utilities, while every renting situation is unique. Some monthly rental costs cover utilities, while others add it. Make sure that when budgeting, you do your best to determine all monthly expenses (including things you may forget, like food expenses) with some money on the side for emergency funds.
If you can afford to rent or buy a home and choose yours, you should also consider your future. For example, are you looking for a home long-term? Or are you looking for less stability and more flexibility? Being realistic about where you see yourself in the next three to five years will help you determine if you want to rent or buy a home.
If you want to be somewhere else or one that is more than you can currently afford, you may want to reconsider buying. However, if you can see stability in your future and can afford and take care of a home that is likely where you will be for the foreseeable future, buying might be the option for you.
Owning a home is a lot of responsibility. Being honest about what you can handle in your life may turn you away from buying a home, or it may support it. Responsibility CAN be a good thing. Real estate is often a good investment where you can profit while renting is not.
Listing your priorities and knowing your limits is incredibly important.
Ask Yourself: What do you want in life? Flexibility or stability? A place that is a good investment or somewhere with little responsibility that doesn’t have to be permanent? Am I good at fixing a home, or will I need to hire a repair person when anything breaks down? Can I handle the extra expenses upfront and when living in a home? These are all important questions to ask yourself. These are all important questions to ask yourself.
Currently, it is a seller’s market. It’s hard to see the future and where the housing market is going, so buying a home is always a risk. But, that is how investing works. This is especially true when it is a seller’s market, and houses are being bought for more than the asking price (depending on location and other variables).
Learning about the current status of the housing market will help you determine your best option as well as allow you to understand what type of home you can afford (whether renting or buying). Keep in mind that renting and buying are more expensive when the housing market is hot, but buying always poses more of a risk (but a higher chance of reward, too).
Do not lie to yourself about what you can handle. I personally know someone who wanted to rent instead of buy for financial freedom, but rather, she spent most of what she had outside of her renting expenses on stocks and lost a ton of money. She would have been better off buying a home as she could have easily hired a repair person and had some repair skills of her own.
Being self-aware is incredibly important. My friend’s situation is unique, and each person just needs to be upfront and aware of their personalities and what their future will look like, given the two different realities of renting vs. buying a home.