Why DO People Buy Homes?

It seems that every time we talk about real estate today the conversation immediately goes to the financial aspects of buying a home. Where are prices headed? Where are interest rates headed? Should I wait to try and get a ‘better buy’? Should I wait until I can get a ‘steal’?

The odd thing about all these questions is that survey after survey keeps telling us that price is not the reason families actually buy a home. When money is considered at all, it is in light of not paying rent to a landlord. Let’s look at two recent surveys as examples:

A Myers Research and Strategic Services Survey

The top five reasons mentioned for buying a home is:

  • Home ownership provides a stable and safe environment for children and other family members
  • Home ownership means the money you spend on housing goes towards building equity, rather than to a landlord
  • Home ownership creates the opportunity to pay off a mortgage and own your home by the time you retire
  • Home ownership creates the opportunity to live in a neighborhood that you enjoy
  • Home ownership allows you the right to decorate, modify and renovate your home as you see fit

A National Housing Survey

The top five reasons given in this survey for buying a home is:

  • It means having a good place to raise children and provide them with a good education
  • You have a physical structure where you and your family feel safe
  • It allows you to have more space for your family
  • It gives you control of what you do with your living space (renovations and updates)
  • Paying rent is not a good investment

In the end

Price dominates conversation when we talk about buying a home. However, when it comes down to it, we actually buy for the same reasons our parents and grandparents did – we want a better lifestyle for ourselves and our families.

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