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Several Benefits of Home Ownership

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1.) Home ownership builds wealth over time.

2.) You build equity every month: The reduction of your mortgage every month increases your equity. The way mortgages work is that the principal portion of your payment increases slightly every month year after year. It is the lowest on your first payment and the highest on your last payment. Thus, as the months and years go by, your equity grows!

3.) You reap mortgage tax deduction benefits:

a.) Mortgage deduction: the tax code allows homeowners to deduct the mortgage interest from their tax obligations. For many people this is a huge deduction, since interest payments can be the largest component of your mortgage payment in the early years of owning a home.

b.) Some closing cost deductions: The first year you but your home, you are able to claim the points (also called origination fees) on your loan, no matter whether they are paid by you or the seller. And because origination fees of 1 percent or more are common, the savings are considerable.

c.) Property tax is deductible: Real estate property taxes paid on your primary residence and a vacation home are fully deductible for income tax purposes.

4.) You get a capital gains exclusion: If you buy a home to live in as your primary residence for more than two years then you will qualify. When you sell, you can keep the profits up to $250,000 if you are single, or $500,000 if you are married, and not owe any capital gains taxes. Now, it may sound ridiculous that your house could be worth more than when you purchased it after these past several years of falling house prices. However, if you purchased your home anytime prior to 2003, chances are it has appreciated in value and this tax benefit will come in very handy.

5.) A mortgage is like a forced savings plan: Paying that mortgage every month and reducing the amount of your principal is like a forced savings plan. Each month you are building up more valuable equity in your home. In a sense, you are being forced to save - that is a very good thing.

6.) Long term, buying is cheaper than renting: In the first few years, it may be cheaper to rent. But over time, as the interest portion of your mortgage payment decreases, the interest that you pay will eventually be lower than the rent you would have been paying. But more importantly, you are not throwing away all that money on rent.