I’ve had a lot of people ask me if they should use their savings to buy a primary residence or a rental property. As usual, the answer is “it depends.” And in this case, maybe the answer is “do both!”
At a recent event, a young couple came up to me and told me they had saved $200,000 to buy a home. First of all, I was so impressed! Few people save money today. Then I asked if they had started house shopping yet and if they could afford a home they’d want to live in for a long time. They told me it wouldn’t be their dream home. It would just be a condo.
Here was my response: If you want to live in a home for a long time for something like raising a family, buying can make a lot of sense if you find a nice community with good schools. The mortgage payments may be a little more than what you’d pay for rent, but when you include the tax benefits, that home loan can be cheaper than rent. Plus, if you have a fixed-rate loan, you don’t have to worry about your rent going up. It will remain the same for the life of the loan.
However, what if you could buy the home you want to live in with a smaller 3% down payment and use the rest of the funds to buy rental property? The cash flow would offset the difference in your mortgage payment, and you’d be building a bigger portfolio.
Lindsey Johnson, President of US Mortgage Insurers, will take a deep dive into mortgage and home financing options, and give us some insights on current public policy on housing and its ramifications on home buyers and investors.
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