A. Getting a mortgage at 15 or 20 years (save 15 years of interest payments)
B. Place 50% down at purchase to get the best possible rate (keep 125K in cash for investment or emergency)
Charles Rutenberg Realty
There are advantages to both options.
1) Having a mortgage allows you to deduct the mortgage interest on your tax returns, giving you a great tax break. If your credit is not that great, but good enough to qualify, having a mortgage and making your payments on time will certainly help you build that credit.
2) Not having a mortgage means that you won't pay any mortgage interest, which will save you a ton of money. You won't have a monthly payment to make and the only costs will be upkeep, taxes, insurance, and the HOA fee if there is one.
Really, it depends on your particular situation. You need to speak with a lender to find out if you would even qualify first, and then speak with your financial adviser to see what the best option would be for you. You may even consider buying a few smaller homes for investment purposes. The Florida market is great for that right now.
Best of luck to you!
If you haven't lived in the U.S. for more than 10 years, and are not sure if you would ever live in the house, why not consider renting a house for your father?
The choice to pay cash or get a mortgage should be addressed to a financial planner. There are pros and cons either way. At some point in the future you will want to sell or rent the house, be sure you're getting into a great neighborhood.
If I can be of further service please let me know.
The whole point of having money is to retain it, and hopefully use it to earn more. You would only buy a property for $250,000 cash if that was a wise use of your funds, otherwise you should consider using someone else's funds (getting a mortgage). That's a financial advisor's expertise, and it would depend on things like your risk averseness, future needs, etc. For example, you mention that your father is elderly - will you have any responsibility for providing for his eventual health care needs? If you tie all of your liquid funds up in a property, you will find that there is a long turnaround in reclaiming that investment for other needs.
I hope you understand what I'm trying to get at - these are excellent questions, but Realtors are not in the best position to advise you, especially without knowing your unique personal circumstances.
To check on your credit, you can go to http://www.annualcreditreport.com. There are a whole lot of other sites and services being advertised out there, but this is the only one that the US Government has set up to provide the one free credit report that the credit bureaux are obligted to provide each year. The other sites talk a good game, but they exist for the sole purpose of selling you some other service, such as credit monitoring. Don't be fooled!
I do hope this helps.
With best regards,
Villa G Realty, Inc.
Leader Mortgage Services
One thing my colleagues haven't commented on is income. Unless you happen to be paid from the United States (you're a government employee overseas, or working for a U.S. based NGO), banks may not want to give you a mortgage, regardless of your credit score. Also, if you're not paying U.S. income taxes, the deduction of interest payments is not an advantage for you. If your father is 88, and you're not planning on living in the house, my suggestion is to make sure that the property you buy can be easily rented in the case that he is no longer to live on his own.
Yours is a good problem to have......if the interest rates were not a favorable the decision would be an easy one to make. But with interest rates as low as they currently are many people in your situation are taking advantage of this opportunity to use available bank resources.
Our recommendation is to investigate loan availability with regards to interest rates and programs that you would qualify for and work the numbers. There's also the option of paying a larger amount in cash...ask your mortgage consultant for all possibilities before considering your options.
In the event your credit has slipped, it's unlikely that it would disqualify you from a mortgage...unless you have abandoned debt that's hanging over your head. Again a cloud that the lender can clarify for you.
Best of luck,