If you’re renting an apartment in the Tri-Cities, 2022 might be the right time to buy your own home.

Sure, home prices have been rising and they’re expected to rise again next year (although at a slower rate than they’ve gone up in the past two years).

But apartment rents have gone up, too, and almost just as much as home prices. Consider this:

As of Fall 2021, the average rent in the Tri-Cities is $1,275 across all apartments. A year ago, average rent was $1,115, so we’ve seen rents go up by 14% in just one year. For the sake of comparison, Tri-Cities home prices rose 17% in 2021 — not much more than rent.

With the apartment vacancy rate at just 1.3% in the Tri-Cities, we can assume renting won’t get any less expensive in the near future.

So if both renting and buying aregetting more expensive, why should you think about buying a home in 2022?

1.) You’ll build equity.

One of the biggest advantages of owning a home is the wealth you build through equity. If you bought a house 10 years ago for, say, $200,000, it might be worth, say, $300,000 right now. But, maybe only owe $100,000 on your mortgage. If you have a house that’s worth $300K and only owe $100K on it, you have $200K in equity in that home.

As a renter, you miss out on building your personal wealth like this. That monthly rent payment makes your landlord wealthier but doesn’t help you.

2.) Your home, your way

Once you own a home, you have the freedom to customize it to your heart’s content. (Barring, of course, potential requirements in place if you buy in a neighborhood with a homeowner’s association.) You can paint, renovate, upgrade as you see fit and don’t have to worry about keeping your landlord happy with your personal design choices.

3.) You can still move quickly if need be.

Some renters feel like they have more flexibility in case they need to relocate for a job or other reasons. But keep in mind that homes are selling extremely quickly right now — our median days on market has hovered around 4-5 all year long. If you need to sell quickly, it should be easy to do so long as you have a clean home in good condition that’s priced correctly.

Bottom Line

Deciding whether to rent or buy a home is a personal decision, and the timing is different for everyone. We don’t pressure our clients one way or another, but we do provide them the information and guidance they need to make the decision that’s right for them. If you’re thinking about buying next year, but have some questions, get in touch with us anytime. We’re happy to talk with you.

– Cari