This is a question that a lot of people ask themselves. So, for a moment let's ignore the temporary ups and downs of the property market and take the long term view about ownership or renting.
This is going to be a big decision that will affect you for a long time, so let's look at some of the pros and cons.
Some of us consider rent to be 'money down the drain'. But ownership isn't cheap.
The benefits of owning:
Once the mortgage is paid off the property is all yours.
If the value of the property increases over that period you will build up some 'equity' that could be used for any purpose including a comfortable retirement.
You can improve your home and increase its value without asking the landlord.
Sometimes it can be cheaper to mortgage a property to buy, than paying the going rent.
The downside of owning:
You need to be certain you can afford what you are taking on.
If interest rates rise, your mortgage payments increase.
It might not always be easy to sell your home, and it always takes time. Renting is more immediate and flexible.
Be sure you can afford the maintenance costs, and consider the additional outgoings like Ground rent and Service charges with leasehold property.
If you are living with a partner and split up, what will happen with the property ownership.
If the value of your home falls you might owe the mortgage company more than the property is worth.
Can you afford the buying process:
If you buy a home you also need to pay for:
The utility bills (Gas, Water & Electric) for example.
If you are still undecided and would like some help please talk to your local Estate Agent, Sapphire Estate Agents, High Street, Sunninghill. 01344 870100