Buying a home is often a long process that starts with looking at your options and deciding which ones are worth visiting, and eventually which one is worth making an offer on. What questions did you ask during your house hunt?
Tagged With home buying
Several years ago, my wife and I were in a bit of a personal bind. We lived together in what was about the tiniest two-bedroom apartment you can imagine, with a small baby and another one on the way. We were already forced into being pretty creative with arrangements with even one baby in the home, but two? It was pretty clear that we needed a bigger place.
When politicians talk about tax and fairness, it's easy for them to point out undeserved loopholes benefiting the wealthy, or multinational companies. But the elephant in the room is the difference between those who own and those who rent (or have recently bought and have huge mortgages) the house they live in. The tax advantages of housing offend against justice on every count: they place financial stresses on the poor, they are unequal, and the increase in price is not deserved.
After saving up for a long time, I recently bought a home, which caught some of my friends off guard. "I thought you were anti-homeownership," they said, because I think renting is underrated. Even as a homeowner, I still think renting is underrated. That doesn't mean buying is a bad decision. The rent vs buy debate is just silly overall. It ignores the enormous grey area that exists between the two options.
Your home is probably the most expensive thing you'll ever own, and that expense goes beyond the closing price. There's the cost of the house, but then there are other ongoing and upfront expenses that can catch you off guard. Especially if you're a first time buyer, it helps to know what you're getting into.
Listening to the housing industry you would think that property tax concessions single-handedly drive new housing supply, keep a lid on rents and provide an opportunity for middle and low income earners to build wealth. In reality, these costly tax breaks increase speculation activity in the housing market, reduce affordability for first home buyers and primarily benefit high income earners. So why have some of these myths proved so enduring?
When you're selling your home, simple upgrades can mean thousands of dollars when you close, and no one can tell you which upgrades will make the most return on your investment more than a real estate agent who works in your area. Ask them what they have seen, and what's in high demand in your neighbourhood.