Should I continue to rent or buy house?

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Ok, I’m getting married this summer. We are renting a home for a little under $ 900/month. Our combined salary is a little over $ 70K. We have great credit but not too much $ for a down payment, maybe $ 5K. I know it is kind of a rule of thumb to not purchase a house around a wedding (parents are paying for most of it) and if you have much debt which I kind of do….college loans still. But it also seems it’s a buyer’s market right now and I don’t know if we wait a couple years will house prices go up again when it rebounds. This would be our first time home buying – and I heard of some programs out there…Fannie Mae, Fred Mac, etc. Please give your opinions and if we could get a house what should I range be?

  1. Reply
    November 10, 2011 at 1:46 pm

    get married first. then buy. You may get lots of cash as wedding presents. continue to save and put away emergency funds for the future as with ownership comes life’s little emergency’s

  2. Reply
    Paul in San Diego
    November 10, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Go to a mortgage broker or a lender (bank) and get pre-approved for a loan. They will look at your income, your debts, and your credit scores to determine how much you can afford to spend on a home. This will give you a price range for a home that you may choose to buy.

    Next, start looking on real estate websites or in the papers for homes for sale in your desired area and in your price range ( is a good national site). This will give you an indication of what kind of homes you can afford to buy. If you find a few that you think you could easily live in, contact a real estate agent in your area to serve as your buying agent. You are under no obligation to pay this person unless you actually buy a home. And, even then, the buyer’s agent’s commission is paid by the seller. So, you have nothing to lose.

    This agent will help you find a home to buy. He (or she) will search the multiple listing service (MLS) for you based on what you can afford and your desired criteria (location, size of house, number of bed/baths, etc.). The agent will show houses to you and help you find the perfect place. And, still you are under no obligation to anyone.

    If you find a place that you want to buy, your agent will draw up the offer for you, including a bunch of pre-conditions called contingencies that must be met before your offer is considered valid (like the property must pass a housing inspection, or you get to back out of the deal with no penalty).

    If you don’t like any of the places and decide that you can’t afford the kind of house you would like to live in, you just tell the agent thank you for your time, but you’re going to continue renting right now. In the mean time, they can still send you listings of houses they think you might be interested in.

    Keep in mind that it might take several months to find that perfect house to buy. It might take only a week or so. Or, you may never find that perfect house. But, your agent will keep working to find a place for you in the hopes that you do eventually buy something, and they get their commission.

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