To buy or not to buy...that is the question. For the past few months, I've been seriously turning over the idea of buying a house. I've lived in my current (one-bedroom) apartment for almost three years, and while I absolutely love it, I'm starting to feel a little cramped and I'm getting the itch to own.
The lease on my apartment is up at the end of May, so I need to make a decision in the next couple of months on what I want to do. Obviously, the real estate market is shaky at best right now. But, if I were to find a place before the end of April, I would qualify for the $8,000 first-time home buyer credit, which would be a nice plus.
Let me back it up a bit...I've always kind of had it in my head that life would work out like this: graduate from college, get married, buy a house, have kids. That's just what happens, right? Well...I'm learning that life doesn't always work out like you planned (and that's ok). I haven't really blogged about it, but I got out of a (very) long-term relationship about 7 months ago. I'm in a really good place right now, and happier than I've been in a long time. But, I'm nowhere near getting married. So, at 25 with the likelihood being that I won't get married for another several years at a MINIMUM, I hate to think about throwing away money on rent for who knows how long while I wait for my perfect marriage-then-house scenario to come along. The thought of buying a place alone is scary, but if it's something I can do financially, then I think it might be the wise choice. And, if I should end up getting married and needing to move in with a hubby in the next several years (trust me, I'll pulling for this scenario!), then it's smarter to go ahead and buy now so I can maximize my time in the house and have the best chance of recouping my costs, rather than wait another year or two to buy, and then have to sell a year later because I'm getting hitched.
At this point, I'm thinking townhome over single-family home, becasue a) they're cheaper b) I wouldn't have to maintain the outside lawn, etc., and c) as a single female, I think I'd feel a little safer in a townhome than in a single-family home. I'm still wrapping my head around everything and keep going back and forth on what I want to do...it's a really big decision.
Any advice on buying a first home??