To Buy or Not to Buy | Virginia Realtors Weigh In On This Pressing Question

Filed Under: Virginia real estate    by: Steve Kayhill

virginia_realtors_helpIt is a commonly held assumption that buying a home is more advantageous than renting. But it’s also important to note that buying real estate is a serious decision and should be undertaken in the right way and at the right time. It should be much easier to decide whether or not it’s the right call for you with the help of experienced Virginia realtors who are working for your best interests.

What Every Realtor Knows

The market moves in all different directions. What is an ideal time to buy for one family may be the perfect time to sell for another. First time home buyers are best to get in while mortgage interest rates are relatively low, but it is never a good idea to stretch your budget too thin. That will only get you into trouble and, eventually, that trouble will head back into the market in the form of foreclosures and stifling financial conditions.

If you are recently out of school and have not been working at your job for long, it may be wise to rent for a time while shopping for real estate. That will allow your credit rating to improve and increase the time elapsed at your workplace. Mortgage companies look favorably on dependable income, so the longer you’ve been at your job, the better.

That being said, even students with a healthy financial situation can secure mortgages. The trick is to be sure that the Virginia real estate you purchase is affordable and priced well. When your credit rating and balance sheet (what you own versus what you owe) looks good approaching a financial institution about mortgage preapproval is a wise first step. Then you can shop for the ideal first home with more confidence.

Why Renting Doesn’t Pay Off In the End

There are a few major disadvantages to renting. In the first place, your monthly payments are serving to line the landlord’s pockets as opposed to building up equity for yourself. Even at the opening stages of a large mortgage amortized over a long period of time you are paying off some of the principal. The longer you pay that mortgage (without borrowing against it), the more equity is building up. After years and years of renting, you will essentially have nothing of value to show for it.

Rental increases are out of your control, meaning you cannot be sure of the overall cost of your place over a long period of time. Mortgage rates, however, can be locked in for substantial terms – from six months to twenty years, depending on the financial institution. In that case your mortgage payment will be set for the term. Most likely the mortgage rates will have changed by the end of your term. But the principal will have decreased, giving you flexibility and control over the size of those payments even beyond the initial term.

Virginia realtors are ready and willing to help first time home buyers and those re-entering the market. They can show you what’s out there and are willing to offer advice on your personal situation – advice that will help you answer the tough question, “to buy, or not to buy?”

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