Your Relocation to the Norfolk Area: To Rent or to Buy Your New House?

The time of your permanent change of station to Norfolk/Virginia Beach has come and you have to relocate. Now, the great question is: to rent or buy your new house? Both options have their pros and cons. In a nutshell, renting means no maintenance costs (because it’s built into your rent), while buying is convenient for those who aim to turn their relocation into a form of investment.
Some advantages of renting are:
– Tenants are limited in the scope of homeowner responsibilities: major building upkeep and upgrades are not on you.
– If you choose to live in an apartment in a resort or similar structure, you can enjoy a lot of comforts – like pools, garden, tennis courts and other amenities – without having to taking care of it.
– You do not have to worry about property taxes.
Renting has several downsides. The main cons are:
– You have to abide by the landlord/community rules. You can’t make any modifications to the house/apartment or yard without permission.
– You could be obliged to refund the owner for any damage to the house, furniture and the appliances that come with the apartment.
– Rent rates can vary over time. In Virginia, landlords can change the rent or challenge different terms after only one year.
– You may not leave before the date set for the termination of the lease. If you do that, you commit a break of the lease with consequent liability.
– You don’t build any equity.
Buying a house is a great idea for those who wish to turn the money that they might spend for a rent into an investment. The pros of this solution are:
– Instead of using your money to pay a rent for long years, you use it to refund the loan the bank gave to you to buy your house. What makes the difference with renting is that you will be the owner of a real estate in the end.
– Single family/non-condo homes may have no community rules or obligations. You are free to have pets.
– No ups and downs in payments with fixed-rate mortgages.
– Interest may be deducted from your taxable income.
The challenges with property are:
– More expenses, like maintenance, gardening, taxes. This doesn’t mean your payments are higher- typically buying is cheaper than renting- especially with today’s very low interest rates!
– More annoyances. Any repairs are up to you, from fixing a leaking faucet, to landscaping.
– Like any investment, buying a house is risky, as the value of your real estate could get depreciated (but also appreciated) over time.
There is not anything like the best choice between these two options, as much depends on you and your family’s individual needs. However, if you are in doubt, please feel free to contact us by email or phone call. Our real estate consultants will help you to make the right decision by providing you with the necessary information throughout the process, actively searching for an accommodation on your behalf (I will do video calls or record a walkthrough if you are unable to travel here). We are also expert negotiators so will make sure your needs are met. The best part? If you choose to buy through our agents, you may get a very useful housewarming gift! An appliance, home warranty or like item- something to make your move less stressful for your family!