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The benefits of buying a house

Rent vs. buying a home

Why should you buy, instead of rent? You'll love the feeling of having something that's all yours -- a home where your own personal style will tell the world who you are. A thriving vegetable garden in the backyard, a tiled entryway, a yellow kitchen. When you own, you can do it all your way!

Many benefits of home ownership

There's more to owning a home than personal satisfaction. You can deduct the cost of your mortgage loan interest from your federal income taxes, and usually from your state taxes, too. And interest will compose nearly all of your monthly payment , for over half the number of years you'll be paying your mortgage. This adds up to hefty savings at the end of each year. And you're also allowed to deduct the property taxes you pay as a homeowner. If you rent, you write your monthly check and it's gone forever. Another financial plus in owning a home is the possibility its value will go up through the years.

HUD homes

Housing and Urban Development (HUD) homes can be a very good deal. When someone with a HUD insured mortgage can't meet the payments, the lender forecloses on the home. HUD pays the lender what is owed and HUD takes ownership of the home. Then HUD sells it at market value as quickly as possible

Bad credit and no down payment

Have bad credit and no money for a down payment? You may be a good candidate for one of the federal mortgage programs that are available. A good place for you to start is by contacting one of the HUD-funded housing counseling agencies. They can help you sort through your options. In addition, contact your local government to see if there are any local homeownership programs that might work for you. Look in the blue pages of your phone directory for your local office of housing and community development or, if you can't find it, contact your mayor's office or your county executive's office.

Single family incomes

Although you won't have the benefit of two incomes on which to qualify for a loan, there's no reason that you can't become a homeowner. Become familiar with the process, pick a good real estate broker and think about getting pre-qualified for a loan. You might want to contact one of the HUD-funded housing counseling agencies in your area to talk through your options.

You also might want to think about buying a HUD home. They can be very good deals. Also, contact your local government to see if there are any local homebuying programs that can help you. Look in the blue pages of your phone directory for your local office of housing and community development or, if you can't find it, contact your mayor's office or your county executive's office.

Next page: How to find a real estate broker

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