The New Yorkers‘ financial writer, James Surowiecki, in “Home Economics” calls into question our nation’s obsession with homeownership. Though homeownership makes sense for most people in the DC Metro area, it does not make sense for everyone.
Surowiecki brings up several interesting points in his article, including a statement that our elongated economic slowdown would be shorter if we weren’t a nation of homeowners, but rather renters that could pick up and move more quickly and adjust to changing environments. He suggests our houses keep us chained to our communities and slow down the natural market correction process.
Indeed, you should evaluate the risks of owning a home – just as you would evaluate the risks of any investment that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Along with those risks, add to your spreadsheet the list of benefits. Sure you’ve heard of the standard list everyone tells you about including tax deductions, return on investment dollars over time, and equity built up by paying down the loan, but isn’t there a lot of value in some of the intangibles?
What about the pride you feel when you sign on that dotted line and know you’ve accomplished something most people in the world cannot do? Do you know how much Argentines would give to be able to buy property through bank resources at 6 percent intest? Some of them gave their lives in the economic crisis in that country in the late 1990s and early 2000s just to have that right. Can you image a line outside of
What about the memories you build for you and your family as a homeowner? I remember at age 12 my parents sold their home in
Don’t rush into your decision to buy a home. Make sure it is the right decision for you. As Realtors we can have that dialog with you and help you come to the right decision – for you.
Have you been renting for many years and have the financial resources to buy – but haven’t? We’d love for you to share your perspective here.
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