Should You Rent or Buy?
Although moving someplace new can definitely be exciting, you have to be very careful when making choices and make sure you take all of your options into consideration before making any decisions. Without a doubt, there are a lot of options available in the real estate department nowadays. However, because of this, it can get quite confusing, especially if you are new to the field.
Before anything else, you will have to decide if you should rent or buy a place. Both are great options and they definitely have their pros and cons. However, most people tend to benefit more from one than the other. Generally speaking, if you are currently a bit tight in the financial department and don't have a stable job under your sleeves yet, then you should consider renting for now - unless you have the means to get an amazing deal somewhere, that is.
If you do decide to rent, then make sure you pay close heed to the fine print presented to you. Make sure that the agreement is clear on the amount that you have to pay and where your payments will actually be going towards. Look for the fine print on the utilities, as well, since this is usually where the majority of problems arise. I've written an article about useful tips that will help you find a room or house to rent-- I hope you've read it, by the way. It wouldn't be a bad move to keep track of your utility use while you are renting, either, so that you can make sure that nothing is wrong with your bill at the end of the month.
If you decide to buy, on the other hand, then you will have to go about things completely differently. For starters, you will have to spend more time looking around until you find the perfect place for you. If possible, get some help in this department and hire a real estate agent who can show you the best deals and guide you through the local market.
Aside from that, you will also have to make sure that your finances are completely in order. Regardless of whether you will be taking out a loan or paying for the house in full, you should know exactly where you stand in the financial sense. Remember: if you fail to make your mortgage payments, things could end up as a massive disaster for you, so make sure you think things through very carefully and plan ahead as much as possible.
You should also keep in mind that you might need extra services after moving into your new place. If the place isn't decorated or furnished yet, for example, then you might want to hire an interior decorator who can help you out. On that note, you might have to get in touch with various service and utility companies and put new contracts in place if you need them, as well. Since this could take up quite a bit of time, though, it would definitely be highly advisable to plan things out in advance. This way, everything can be in order by the time you decide to move in.
Still confused if you're buying or renting a home? Check out this useful tool from Yahoo! Real Estate-- it's a rent vs. own online calculator. Pretty cool, huh.