Is it time to stop renting and buy a home of your own?
There are many good reasons to buy a home. Along with the pride of ownership, buying a home can give you and your family a greater sense of stability and security. Owning your home can also be a great way to build equity for the future.
However, buying your first home is a big decision, both financially and emotionally. Whether you're ready to become a homeowner depends on your lifestyle, employment plans and many other factors. So, how do you know if the time is right to buy your first home?
Here are three signs you're ready to go from renter to homeowner:
You want to “put down roots"
When you rent, you have the flexibility to move to a new location when your lease is up. But when you own a home, it's generally best to stay in place for at least five years before moving. This will give your home time to appreciate and build equity so you can break even or make a profit when you sell.
Ask yourself these questions to determine if you're ready to settle down in one place:
- Are you happy and secure in your current job? Or, are you open to new job opportunities in other locations? If you have a spouse or partner, do they feel the same way?
- Are you comfortable staying in the same area and community for several years? Do you picture yourself moving again soon?
- Do you plan on moving in with a significant other or growing your family in the near future?
If you're not sure about the answers to the questions, you may want to consider renting for a little longer.
Your finances are in order
If you're like many people, buying a home is one of the biggest financial commitments you'll ever make. It can be intimidating, especially if you're not sure what to expect! One way to feel more confident about your home buying journey is to have a clear understanding of your finances and budget.
Here are a few steps to take when preparing your finances for homeownership:
- Use a
mortgage calculator to get an idea of the monthly mortgage payment you can afford.
- Check your credit score for free at
AnnualCreditReport.com. If your score isn't as strong as you'd like it to be, give yourself the time to build it up before house hunting.
- Save for a down payment and closing costs. It's also a smart idea to have cash savings on-hand for unexpected emergencies once you move into your home.
You're ready for more responsibility
Owning a home is rewarding, but it also comes with a lot of responsibility. When you own a property, you're in charge of all the repairs, maintenance and landscaping tasks. From mowing the lawn to fixing leaky faucets and dealing with pests, keeping your home in tip-top shape is up to you! If you're not willing to roll up your sleeves (or pay a professional) to handle these tasks, renting may be a better option for now.
When you're ready to buy your first home, Wright-Patt Credit Union (WPCU) is here to make it a little easier! We'll be with you at each step of the home buying process so you can achieve your dream of homeownership!
Contact us today to get started.