Rent vs Buy in East Lansing>Question Details

Relocating f…, Home Buyer in East Lansing, MI

Moving to East Lansing area: buy or rent?

Asked by Relocating from Abroad, East Lansing, MI Tue Apr 15, 2008

I am almost certainly moving to the East Lansing area in January 2009 to teach for 1.5 years at MSU. I may end up staying after that, but there are no guarantees. My question is: given current market conditions, would it be better to rent when I first get there (for the term of my contract or until I know what is going to happen long-term) or buy because houses are so inexpensive right now (perhaps even a foreclosure, for example)?

If we bought and resold in 1.5 years, we wouldn't be looking to make any money, but would be looking to essentially break even.

If renting is the more prudent option, can anyone recommend a good East Lansing/Lansing area rental resource (preferably online, though others are welcome, as well)? I've tried LSJ.com, but didn't find many relevant listings (I would prefer to rent a house or townhouse, as I have two kids, a cat, etc.). Any help would be greatly appreciated (and remembered should I stay in the area later and buy).

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Relocating, Lansing is on the fringe of the area most effected by housing price decreases. Sorry, I do not have a crystal ball about the future. My gut instinct would be to lease. There would be no guarantee you could break even. This would of course depend upon your contract with MSU.

Hope you enjoy the area.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 15, 2008
If you can find a deal (foreclosure) and don't mind some work because a lot of foreclosurs require work, (some more than others), I would consider buying. If you bought low enough and in the right area you should be fine. But, it sounds like your sitution is up in the air. If you want to rent a house, go through a Realtor. A lot of sellers are struggling to sell and many times also offer the home for rent. Realtors can help you find the home and help with lease option negotiations if you choose to go that route.

I know several good Realtors in the Lansing area if you'd like some assistance. Drop me a line ... no obligation.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 15, 2008
Buying low and selling high is always the idea, however 18 month's is a short time, even with the deals on bank owned homes right now. The market took 5 years of record breaking sales to get into the mess it is in right now and may take more than 18 months to get back to normal. Real estate is a longterm investment. You may consider buying abank owned home at the right price and renting it out when you leave, however I would not bank on making much money in 18 months. The rent vs buy calculator that Missy recommends is also another good tool for you to use. You can visit my site below to view over 6000 listings for sale and get additional ideas on buying your first home.
Web Reference: http://mikebowler.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 15, 2008
Use my rent to buy calculator, hope it helps.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 15, 2008
I have just the right home for you.
Locate in the Moore River Subdivision, Locate in the same sub division as the Mayors, and the Governors home ( quiet and very safe neighborhood). A 4 bedroom 4 1/2 baths, plus office, with washer and dryer and partially furnish.

2 car garage, finish basement and much more. Excellent, clean, large master bedroom and much more.
5 minutes from downtown lansing and less than 10 minutes to MSU. Great price. Let me know if you would like to know more...........GD
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 13, 2009
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