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To buy or not to buy:

That is the big question, with no simple answer. Home ownership is not right for everyone at all times in their lives, and life doesn’t come with a handbook. If the question has popped into your mind here are some reasons why you should seriously consider it:
Owning your home is an excellent way to build equity that allows you to develop some financial stability and build capital for your “move up” home. It gives you some security for the future giving you a resource you can fall back on.
Paying rent each month may be fine and even necessary for a while, giving you time to build your credit or adapt to a new city after a recent move. I don’t disagree with the folks that say paying rent for a long time is like throwing money away. Consider this, if you were to buy a $300,000 home with 5% down, and experienced a very modest 3% growth, which is half the expected national average this year, your $15,000 investment would increase to $24,000 giving you a 60% return on your investment.
For the first few years of your mortgage, your blended payments are mostly comprised of interest with a teeny bit going towards your loan or principal amount. A gradual shift occurs and you start to pay more principal and less interest as your mortgage continues to mature. While it may be true that you feel like you are only paying rent for the first while you are actually building equity by paying down your original loan amount. So, even if your home were never to appreciate in market value you would still be ahead of the game by paying your own mortgage instead of your landlords.
Rents can go up, and you have little or no control of that, but you can lock into a long term with a mortgage to make sure that your monthly expense does not increase giving you security knowing exactly how much your payments will be for years to come. Time seems to fly and you could end up paying rent for years, adding up to tens of thousands of hard earned dollars, and never end up with anything to call yours.
Owning your home gives you the option to earn income either by renting out the whole property or by garnishing an income from an auxiliary apartment, or room where permitted by law.
A home is a great way to secure a loan once you have built up some equity, even if your mortgage is not paid off. You can get a secured loan at a much lower interest rate than other personal loans.
With property values expected to continue to rise throughout this year and the next, your investment will be earning money while you sleep. My favourite expression is work smart, not hard!
BY SANDRA RINOMATO