Little House icon

Buy vs. Rent (for 3-5 years)

Deciding whether to buy or rent is a highly subjective discussion. This site is aimed at people who have already decided to buy. If however, you are here and have not yet decided whether or not you want to buy a home right now, then I present the following points (and posts) for your consideration.

  • We bought our house upon moving to residency and it was an overall positive experience and a net-positive financial endeavor – although not everyone has the same experience
  • Even if it had been a break-even financial decision (or slightly negative), I would have still done it because owning a home beats renting every day of the week for my personality

That said….

  • Almost all the financial websites say that it is better for a doctor to rent than to buy for less than 5 years (most of these sites are more than 3 years old though and much has changed since 2018.
  • I will link to a bunch of these sites below

Here are some good questions to ask before reading the links below…

  • How long do you anticipate living in the home?
  • Do you expect your family size to increase while you are there?
  • Do you have a spouse that will be earning an income?
  • If you are single, would you consider having a roommate rent from you?
  • Do you and/or your spouse enjoy the tasks of owning a home (repairs, lawn and landscaping, improvements, etc)?
  • Do you have any money for a downpayment?
  • What reasons other than financial investment do you have for wanting to own a home?
  • What are your personal preferences regarding owning the house you live in?

Here are some posts that are mainly considering the buy or rent question from the financial investment angle. I would start with the top one which is written by a doctor’s wife in March 2019 and is a good overview of what the rest of the sites will say:

A Final Note:

Real estate agents and mortgage lenders clearly have a vested interest in you buying a home. They should be used to help you make a good buying decision after you have made your own decision of whether to buy or not.