Looking forward

So yesterday I found out I actually got a raise last year, just no one ever told me about it!  Guess that shows how much attention I pay to my paystubs, huh?  Anyways, I was waiting for my financial situation to solidify to seriously house-hunt, so I’d be able to budget properly, and now that I know I already got a bump and when my next one is coming, I can actually start to look and plan on where I want to move.  Which brings up another question:

Rent or Buy?

Renting has a few advantages.  For one, you don’t need to worry about maintenance of the place, as that is the landlord’s responsibility.  You also don’t need to go into debt for it(unless you’re in a really crappy financial position) and you’re not tied down.  There’s no property to sell, you just up and go when it’s time to move.

The lack of ties however is a double-edged sword.  As the landlord still owns the property, if they get into financial trouble you could lose your place due to no actions of your own.   If you run into financial troubles yourself, there’s a lot less barriers to losing the place and ending up on the street, and while there is no debt, you’re also essentially throwing the money away too, as rent paid is money you’ll never get back.   Basically, pretty much all the main downsides of renting are financial in nature.  The only one that I can think of that isn’t is that you are limited in what changes you can make to the place yourself.

Buying a place basically reverses all these issues.  You have to fully maintain it yourself(barring a townhome or condo), but you can make whatever changes you want without consulting anyone else.  You go into debt(unless you can save up several years worth of salary) but you eventually get your money back when you sell it, inflation-adjusted as the house prices follow inflation.  You have to sell it when you move, but there’s less of a chance to immediately end up on the street if your finances go south.  About the only unique aspect to buying is paying property taxes, as there is no equivalent when renting.

At this point in my life, a 2+ bedroom townhome is what I’m looking for as I can turn the extra bedroom into a study/library/mancave, and I don’t need to worry about yardwork.  I’ve only glanced over the for sale listings a few months ago and checked out one townhome complex that has them up for rent, so I don’t have a large sample at the moment.

My initial inclination was towards renting, for the lack of debt/ties and maintenance, but the cost to rent the townhome I looked at was about on par with the monthly payments of some mortgages.  It was a fairly nice place apart from that, which is the main reason I haven’t fully written it off yet.  What I really do now though is look through the listings of local townhomes that may be for sale and see what’s out there currently.

One factor that inclines me towards renting is that the person I’m interested in is several states away.  If anything ever comes of it, that’ll have to change eventually, but as the saying goes, eventually can be a very long time.  As such, I’m trying to exclude those thoughts when examining my options.

Basically, at this point the main factors inclining me against buying are going back into debt, and having to sell before/when I move.  I know someone at my workplace that has been having a lot of trouble trying to sell his house, so that’s not as easy as it sounds, while with the way the US is heading the less debt, the better.

At this point, I’m basically going to have to do some research, both in mortgages and in what’s available, to decide for sure whether I want to rent or buy a townhome.  Or if I want to stick it out at my current place a while longer to keep saving up.

In other news, my WoW guild is 4/14H now, as we got Galakras heroic down last night.  We even had a heroic warforged staff drop, but I’d already used my priority roll on a heroic tier token earlier this week, so I had to pass. Either way, we’re still progressing.  I’ve got until mid-May to decide if I want to drop my sub temporarily or not, so still some time to see what we do.

Finally, in art news, still got a couple pics in the works, but no word yet on where they are.  Also waiting on stream sketch commissions to happen again as well, as I want to get a pic for someone, and a stream sketch would be perfect for that.  We’ll see!

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