June 14, 2024

To Rent or To Own Your Home?

Did you know June is Homeownership Month? If you’ve been pondering the thought of owning your own home, one day soon or even down the road, it’s always good to start by asking yourself a handful of questions. Crack open your journal and begin to reflect on the following notes:

1. What can I afford? Calculate for yourself.

2. How’s my credit score? Think of it like your cost to borrow funds. Generally, a poor credit score will result in a higher rate of borrowing money. 

3. Do I have enough for the upfront costs? Upfront costs include down payment and closing costs. Depending on your situation, you can buy a home with as little as $1,000 if using a down payment assistance program or 3% down for first-time homebuyer programs. To understand the best programs for you, talk to a home loan expert.

4. What about expenses outside the mortgage?  Utilities, commuting and parking costs, local property taxes, association fees (HOA), any salary differences, things like internet and food prices. It’s good practice to budget at least 1% of your home's value to a home maintenance fund each year to cover routine fixes and upkeep.

5. Will my lifestyle change with my home purchase?  This can be for folks moving to the city, the suburbs, or to a whole different state. It’s important to consider day to day changes in response to your local neighborhood and conveniences.

Remember, when it comes to renting or buying a home, you don’t have to go through the process on your own. Talk to a certified financial coach or home loan expert to help ensure your calculations are correct and financial plan is perfect for the homeownership goals you have set out. 

Good luck!


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