If you are in the market to buy a home of your own, you need to ask yourself one question: WHY?
It seems like a simple enough question yet it is not. Experts are predicting that, in many markets, prices will continue to soften (see our blog from yesterday). That has caused many buyers to stay on the fence of indecision hoping to buy at the optimum time. If the reason you are buying is to do a quick 'flip' of the property to make money, waiting most definitely makes sense.
What if the reason you are moving isn't about finances however. Does it still make sense to delay? That depends on why you are buying. What if your purchase is more about improving the quality of life for you and your family? Or moving into a school district where your child's talents will be maximized? Or being closer to friends and family? There is a cost to delaying any of these decisions.
We realize everyone wants to make a sound financial decision no matter the actual reason for moving. Delaying in a hope to 'time' the market might not make sense however. Forbes.com addressed this issue in an article by John E. Girouard last week:
“Trying to time the housing bottom is as much folly as trying to time stocks or any other investment vehicle. In fact, it’s greater folly because if housing prices do fall further, it’s likely to be because mortgage rates are rising, which would mean that over the long term that slightly lower price you may have paid could end up costing more in carrying costs than you saved.”
He went on to say:
“My answer to those who ask whether now’s the time to buy a house is that the American Dream is and always was alive and well. It has nothing to do with the direction of housing prices but everything to do with your financial situation, income stability, ability to shoulder the costs, and if the home you have your eye on is your version of the American Dream—a home you love that you hope to live in for an extended period.”
Don't make buying a home solely a financial decision. Is the real reason you want your own home more important than money? Only you know the answer.