There’s no magical number out there nor is there any formula for knowing if and when it’s time to buy that coastal home. You can ask any economist and they’ll tell you that in addition to your finances and the state of the market, there are way too many emotional factors to have one answer for the masses. You can, however, make sure that buying a home is an actual possibility for you at this time. Once you know you are financially ready, then you must ask yourself if you are emotionally ready. Is it what you really want?
As of September 2013, buying was 35% cheaper than renting in all 10 of the major metropolitan areas. No one, no matter how well-positioned they might be, has to buy a home. However, there are some very appealing arguments to homeownership. One emotion is the feeling of having “roots” or a sense of stability and pride. Plus, there’s the freedom to be creative and make improvements to your own home while increasing its financial value. Needing not to worry about incremental rent increases that might force a move can be a definite perk as well.
If you are still unsure with the age old battle of renting or buying, consider the following:
Do you have four to five years to invest?
If you know with some certainty that you can and want to stay in this area for at least four to five years, buying may make sense. Being so close to San Francisco and other Bay Area metro areas, gives our coastside communities a rather good appeal since it’s an easy commute.
Do you know what you can comfortably afford?
Knowing what you can afford before you begin the house hunt is a key element in your decision. A basic rule of thumb is not to spend more than 20-25 percent of your pretax income on a house. That includes monthly mortgage, insurance payments and property tax. Keep in mind that you will want to make some adjustments to your new home and you don’t want to go into a house already stressed about expenses.
How knowledgeable are you about the home buying process?
Without the expertise of a Realtor® who knows the area, it’s easy to make mistakes in the home buying process. The Rain Team can guide you through the process in a clear and concise manner to help you understand and make your home buying decisions easier. Knowledge is power and we make sure you have both!
Can you balance your emotions with logic?
No matter how hard you try to keep emotions out of it, buying a home is an emotional process. Nor should you try to toss your feelings aside and make it only a rational-based process. Use those natural emotions to guide you to your core values, find that home that meets all your needs and appeals to your senses and when it’s time for the critical decisions or compromise, bring in your pure logic to help determine what is best for you in the long run.
First and foremost, take the time to consider your options, your pros and cons, and listen to your inner voice. If your core priorities and values are leading you to homeownership, be honest with yourself and others and make the resolve to do it.
If you have decided it’s your time to buy a coastside home, our goal is to guide you through the process from the beginning to the purchase of your new home and beyond. Contact us today via email or give us a call at (650) 888-6903.