Deciding whether to rent or own a home is a big decision for Oakland County residents. Many families are still getting back on their feet after the tough recession, and choosing how and where to spend money and determining the best type of investments can be difficult. Housing prices and mortgage rates are still low, but it’s still important to be cautious when choosing whether to buy a home or condo.

A recent survey by mortgage company Fannie Mae found that plans for buying a house are determined largely by someone’s current financial status and their history as either a buyer or a renter.

Even homeowners who have seemingly been burned by the market in the past and faced a foreclosure or were underwater on a mortgage, many people seem to stick with home ownership. Many look forward to the next time they can own a home, often inquiring about how long one must wait after a bankruptcy filing or short sale before they will be able to get a new mortgage.

However, along with these intentions, there are also financial factors that dictate when someone will choose to own versus rent a home. Surveyors found that the combination of income and age determined 61 percent of the likelihood that someone is an owner or renter. Employment and marital status were the next strongest predictors, making up 15 percent of the total.

For people who are considering buying a home rather than remaining as renters, the housing market in the city where one wishes to buy is also an important deciding factor. Finding the right home in the right price range and neighborhood can be a challenge, especially now that inventories of previously owned homes are down significantly.

Source: Businessweek, “What Makes a Renter vs. an Owner,” Karen Weise, August 6, 2012.

Our Detroit real estate firm handles purchases and sales of homes, more information about what we do is available on our website.