Plain and simple, owning a home can improve your quality of life, provide stability and give you a sense of control you just can't get from renting. You have a place to live when you rent, but buying is something much deeper – and better.
The intangibles are tough to measure, but there are other benefits you can quantify:
Your monthly mortgage payment creates equity for you, not your landlord.
The interest on your mortgage is a tax deduction:
While this isn't a reason in itself to buy a home, it's nice to get a break at tax time.
Fixed monthly housing payment:
If you opt for a fixed-rate mortgage, the monthly rate of your mortgage won't change for the length of the term.
Look for a house you can stay in long-term; one that will “grow” with your family and needs. The financial benefits of owning increase over time.
Look for an agent who understands your lifestyle. Make sure the agent knows the neighborhoods you're interested in, and can answer questions you'll have about the location.
When it's time to sell your home, you don’t pay taxes on the proceeds of the sale that are above what you paid (with some restrictions – see information on capital gains).
See Tips on Choosing and Working With a Realtor