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Buying or Renting

Buying or Renting

Old Aug 29th 2010, 12:22 pm
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Default Buying or Renting

When arriving in the US on an L1 or H1 visa, as I understand it you are treated in terms of finance in the same way as a USC or GC resident?
Am i right in thinking this?

But, irrespective of the ability to get loans is it worth renting until you get a green card or is it worth buying and getting on the housing ladder as soon as you can?
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 12:46 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

I bought (arrived on L1).....this was with no credit history but it was horrendously difficult and stressful.

Having said that, after tax breaks, we are some $500-600 per month better off having bought.

Another factor in our decision was that I have lived here before and know the area like the back of my hand. IF I did not know the area where I was moving to for work there is no way I would buy.
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 12:53 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

I'm with saint on this. I would think renting would be better for a number of reasons, one of which is knowing exactly where you want to live. Even a matter of three miles distance can make or break your joy of living in an area. Second is that I've seen people on L visas who are waiting for residency status lose their job because of the economy or takeovers, etc. and they have to move back to their own countries and are left with a house that is difficult to sell or have to sell low because they have no choice.
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 12:54 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

I'd definitely rent until you get to know the area...especially if you have kids and need to get a feel of the school districts.
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 1:30 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

Originally Posted by lisa67 View Post
I'd definitely rent until you get to know the area...especially if you have kids and need to get a feel of the school districts.
I'm fortunate in having friends and family in florida in both the davenport/winterhaven areas and down in west palm, the latter being where i would be likely to live with the job role ive currently applied for in my company (on an L1) and know the area reasonably well...I presume in the same way as in the UK, if you buy, but find a different house within your financial means and find a buyer for your existing property that there is nothing stopping you moving?
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 1:38 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

Originally Posted by ryanthelion84 View Post
I presume in the same way as in the UK, if you buy, but find a different house within your financial means and find a buyer for your existing property that there is nothing stopping you moving?
Sure. But we're in a house, in a good area, that we can't get rid of for love nor money. House prices have dropped dramatically and no one is buying. Initially we wanted this to be a starter home (my husband has a long commute) but 5 years later he still has a long commute and we may be here for the long haul.

All areas are different though. But I've heard that Florida isn't one of the better states for real estate.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/...ealtors-report
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 2:16 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

Originally Posted by AmerLisa View Post
Sure. But we're in a house, in a good area, that we can't get rid of for love nor money. House prices have dropped dramatically and no one is buying. Initially we wanted this to be a starter home (my husband has a long commute) but 5 years later he still has a long commute and we may be here for the long haul.

All areas are different though. But I've heard that Florida isn't one of the better states for real estate.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/...ealtors-report
Lisa > Agreed...FL is pretty awful for property prices...what I think may be best is as suggested, rent in the short term, in particular until you have a better idea about a) area and b) green card...unless of course you put a lot of effort in upfront to make sure the area you buy in is one you want to stay in long term...but...on the flipside...with properties cheap, so many foreclosures it is certainly a buyers market if you can secure the loan...maybe it is the right time to invest...
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 2:20 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

Originally Posted by ryanthelion84 View Post
Lisa > Agreed...FL is pretty awful for property prices...what I think may be best is as suggested, rent in the short term, in particular until you have a better idea about a) area and b) green card...unless of course you put a lot of effort in upfront to make sure the area you buy in is one you want to stay in long term...but...on the flipside...with properties cheap, so many foreclosures it is certainly a buyers market if you can secure the loan...maybe it is the right time to invest...
I think now is a great time to buy, it is a buyers market. If you're a first time home buyer (with cash and a secure mortgage) you're spoiled for choice. Interest rates are low and there is plenty of supply.

However, make sure its the area you want. Do as much research as possible, because you could be stuck there for a very long time.
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 2:46 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

Originally Posted by AmerLisa View Post
I think now is a great time to buy, it is a buyers market. If you're a first time home buyer (with cash and a secure mortgage) you're spoiled for choice. Interest rates are low and there is plenty of supply.

However, make sure its the area you want. Do as much research as possible, because you could be stuck there for a very long time.
Couldn't agree more. We moved here in early June, after doing lots of research. The ONLY reason we chose this area is because our Son still had a year of high school to finish and this area has the best school....

But, we are already looking at other places to move too after our one year lease is up. Because the school is so good, the expense of living in this area is very high Hubby has a commute to work of almost an hour each way and the locals are pretty much snobs!
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 3:27 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

I wouldn't buy unless I knew I was going to be permanent (green card or USC). Can't you lose your job on a L1 and have to move quickly out of the country? You'd be stuck with a house to sell fast and nothing is moving fast anymore.
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 3:41 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

Originally Posted by Mummy in the foothills View Post
I wouldn't buy unless I knew I was going to be permanent (green card or USC). Can't you lose your job on a L1 and have to move quickly out of the country? You'd be stuck with a house to sell fast and nothing is moving fast anymore.
Great advice. This happened to us. We built a house just outside Charlotte in 2006. OH on H1B, me just about to submit L1 paperwork having moved to London to do the 365 days for the parent company. Both of us had written contracts for getting GC - Both lost jobs in 2009.
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 5:03 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

Originally Posted by ryanthelion84 View Post
I presume in the same way as in the UK, if you buy, but find a different house within your financial means and find a buyer for your existing property that there is nothing stopping you moving?
Sure, but the property market continues to be in a very big slump right now so you could still quite easily take a big hit on the price that you can get for the first property (or just not be able to find a buyer) - and you will also lose out on the costs involved in the sale.

It is almost certainly better to plan on renting for the first 6 to 12 months and only consider buying once you are more settled.
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 9:03 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

Agree with pretty much everyone else on this. I was transferred a number of times by my company, and we always rented before we bought.
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 9:18 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

i wanted to buy asap but for various reasons we ended up renting for 11 months - and that was invaluable. The house we ended up with is very different to the ones we first looked at upon arrival - we just were able to make a more informed choice once we had actually lived in the climate/culture/school district/life style etc for that time.
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Old Aug 29th 2010, 9:40 pm
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Default Re: Buying or Renting

On a side note, I would have been very unhappy if we had bought a house within distance of the windblown smell of the papermill here It is a smell unlike anything I have ever smelt before (impossible to describe) We smell it pretty much every time we travel over the Ravenal bridge towards Charleston and believe me, even after leaving that area the smell is still hanging around in the car (and nose hairs) YUCK!!!

There is no way we would have known about something like that without 'living' here for a while, we will at least know the areas to avoid now when we do decide to move
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