I would strongly suggest to go with something that is listed on MLS, that way you know that a REAL person has met with the REAL owner of the property and that it's not somebody in another area or country trying to run a scam. A house I had listed for sale was put on Craigslist as a Rent-to-Own by someone other than the real owners. Thankfully the potential Buyer went by the house, saw my sign and called me before she sent thousands of dollars to the "Owner of the property".
If you can get a mortgage, that is the best way to go. The rates are amazing right now. If you cant contact a local agents and ask them how many rent to own deals they have done. Those deals can demand a creative mind sometimes and somebody that has done them before will be a great asset for you.