Mr or Ms Cashley,
No, now is not a good time to buy. It is still cheaper to rent the same property than it is to own it, at the moment. You can either choose to rent the house from the landlord or rent the money to buy the house from the bank, there is no difference. You are not building equity so yes, there is no difference. In fact if prices fall further, you are not "tied" to the losses,
There are properties that are in not so nice areas that may counter that statement, but for assumption purposes, I would think that you want to be in one of the nicer and safer neighborhoods.
With the tax rates dropping but still relatively high and the same for homeowners insurance, this eats up or sometimes consumes any cash flow that you may recognize. Add to this the maintenance, the water and sewer and any HOA fees. I do not see the economics of owning. Life is too short to have a negative cash flow, right?
The market in in South FL was based off of unrealistic, fraud induced, inflation in home prices.
Now that the game has changed and prices are still trying to find their footing or a "bottom", the rental game is what everyone is trying to do to stay afloat.
The condo that I am in for example is direct waterfront on Biscayne Bay in Miami. There is a front door man, concierge, 24 hour valet, pools gym, you name it! If the owner of my unit gave me the unit, I will say that again, GAVE ME THE UNIT. My Taxes, Insurance and Condo fee will be more that the rent.
No surprise that the current price of 300 grand is producing no sales and is dropping.
Rent for awhile, get to know an area that you really like, don't commit so quickly.
Time is on your side. Inflation in food prices, gas prices, tuition, all insurances, electricity are all on the rise. This means real incomes are falling and prices have nowhere to go but down.
If you are in the banker haven neighborhoods, well, then life is certainly different isn't it. Those areas have seen bailout funds funnel into their bank accts and they see no new recession on the horizon that "we" are getting ready to see in quarter 3 of this year.
Rent, enjoy, stay mobile.
your non agent friend,