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Buying vs Renting: Should I Buy a House?

May 5th, 2011

As home prices fall and rents rise, home buyers are suddenly finding themselves in an advantageous position. In nearly 4 out of 5 major US cities, it’s less expensive to buy a home than to rent. According to online real estate resource Trulia, that is up from 72 percent of cities last quarter.

The housing market has taken a tragic beating over the last few years and this has prompted a shift from buying to renting. Although, the housing market could still see an influx of foreclosures, this potentially presents unique buying opportunities for those who are trying to decide whether they should rent or buy a home. After all, housing prices haven’t been this low since the 1970s and the last time we saw these low mortgage interest rates was in 1972. These factors all significantly increase affordability for a growing number of prospective home buyers.

The housing market is showing signs of healthy recovery and positive change is on the horizon. In March 2010 the home sales index was up 5.1 percent, as more Americans signed contracts to buy homes, according to the National Association of Realtors. This could be a signal that more house hunters are feeling confident in snapping up those bargains.

“As we head into the summer buying season, those looking to buy a home should be encouraged by improvements in the market and feel optimistic about their chances of finding an affordable home, much more so than in previous years, “ said Ken Shuman, head of communications at Trulia, in a press release.

If you have a steady income with a good employment history, can provide a down payment and are current with all debts, there may never be a better time to purchase a home. Renting provides short term relief, but realistically you’re paying someone else’s mortgage instead of your own. In fact, the cost of rent may even exceed that of a typical mortgage payment.

The American Dream of homeownership can be yours too.