Is it a sound financial decision to buy a house that you will only live in for four to five years?

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4 days ago
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Buying in your case is a sound decision if the home can easily be converted into a rental property when you leave.  If you buy a home that is difficult to rent out (and difficult to resell for that matter) the bare minimum time you spend there should be 7 years.  When I think of homes that are difficult to rent out or resell I think of way out in rural areas, new constructions, bespoke homes, homes with high upkeep costs, etc.  However, if you buy a home that you know will be easy to rent out because it is in an area where there is a lot of rental demand (near a major university, lots of transient young professionals, etc.), you can always just turn it into an income-producing asset when you leave by putting it on the market as a rental.

If you don't want the hassle of being a landlord, you can usually hire a rental agency for a modest one-time upfront fee and then about 10% of the ongoing rent.  That way, it is out of sight and out of mind, being professionally managed, and you just sit back and collect the check.

You are well-educated young people clearly committed to making smart decisions and growing your assets.  Owning rental real estate is a nice diversifying tool as you grow your assets.  It's good to own some stocks, some bonds, and some real estate.  I think buying a home, living in it for a while, and then turning it into a rental property for income when you move on could be a great play for you.

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