Auston Grove Apartments

1160 Auston Grove Drive, Raleigh, NC 27610
Call: 866-220-3907 Email UsAustonGrove.PropertySite.HHHunt@aptleasing.info View Map

Opens: Monday-Friday: 9A-6P | Saturday: 10A-5P | Sunday: 1P-5P

$800-$1250

Apartments Raleigh NC Blog

Young Professionals Are Choosing to Rent Instead of Buy - Raliegh, NC

Young Professionals Are Choosing to Rent Instead of Buy - Raliegh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Auston Grove Apartments, Raleigh, NCHome ownership has reached a five-decade low due in part to the fact that millennials have historically low ownership rates compared to other generations at that age.

Home ownership has always been a part of the American dream. So why aren’t more millennials willing to purchase a place to call home? Should they purchase homes or is it smarter for them to rent? There are several factors to consider.

The Relocation Factor

After the housing crash of 2007, many millennials began to realize home ownership may not be quite the American dream as it has long been touted by realtors and organizations who encourage home ownership.

In fact, home-buying may not be a good idea for the vast majority of millennials – at least not right now.

Not only does it represent a huge financial risk, but it ties you down to a specific area – which may not be very convenient if a higher paying job which required relocation came calling.

For those who want to focus on establishing their careers, some experts highly recommend renting.

Another expert doesn’t think there is a “correct” answer, it depends on each millennial’s individual circumstances.

How long do you plan on staying in the area or in this particular home?  Except in rare cases where you’d be buying into a rapidly appreciating market, or you’re renovating a total fixer-upper, if you don’t plan on staying more than a minimum of 2-3 years, it probably makes more sense for you to rent.

The Debt Factor

While some millennials may not want to purchase a home, many simply are not able to because of debt. Lingering debt and financial worries play a critical role in the home-buying decision.

Despite millennials’ well-publicized low rate of homeownership, our index found 76 percent feel being able to save for a home remains important to achieving an ideal home life – but only 37 percent feel satisfied in their ability to save.

Any millennials who are thinking about purchasing a home will need to understand and then start building their credit score so they can qualify for a mortgage when the time comes.

Perceived job security is another contributing factor. And financially speaking, one needs ample money for a down payment, pre-paid items at a closing like property taxes, and also insurance and renovations.

Even if you have a stable income, your home shouldn’t eat up all of your money.

If it would take every penny of your savings to make a down payment on a home, and you’re not certain of your ability to replenish that in the future, you may want to factor that into your decision.

There are many loan programs out there that can help first-time home buyers with down payment assistance, or that don’t require a severed arm and leg in order to get a mortgage. But millennials should also consider their comfort level with the final estimate.

A home is a huge purchase and demands substantial responsibility in terms of monthly payments and ongoing upkeep, so it’s important to be realistic when it comes to assessing whether you can and should purchase a home.

For more information on apartments in Raleigh, NC contact Auston Grove.

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Should Millennial Rent or Buy? – Raleigh, NC

Should Millennial Rent or Buy? – Raleigh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, November 22, 2016

If you’re a millennial then you’ve given some thought about whether you want to rent or buy the next place you live in. With so much to consider it’s hard to break it all down. After all, questions like, "when is a good time for me?" or, "can I even afford a home?" are difficult to answer. Here are some of the factors you should consider. Take a look at the most important factors in considering the question, “should I rent or should I buy?”

Expenses

Rent – When it comes to expenses, or the cost of living outside of your monthly payment, renting comes up as a winner. If your dishwasher breaks your landlord picks up the tab. Likewise for any other appliance, plumbing, or structural issue. That means you don’t have to keep emergency funds for the unexpected when it comes to your living situation. It’s also time consuming and it costs a lot of money to organize labor, shop for the best deal, and hire professionals to perform maintenance.

Buy – Expenses come up constantly when dealing with a home purchase, from start to finish. Let’s revisit the scenario when your dishwasher breaks. You’ll have to pay a pretty penny to replace it. That’s why experts say it is imperative to keep emergency funds on the ready. There will always be an expense that comes up monthly, yearly, or once a decade. On the flip side, when something fails that will usually prompt you to make an improvement. These add up and equate to a higher value for your home.

Savings

Let’s talk a little bit more about savings when it comes to renting versus buying a home. There are savings either way but there are very different reasons. When buying it gets complicated and we’ll show you that there is a lot to consider.

Rent – We already discussed savings in the form of your landlord picks up the tab when something requires attention. The fact is that renting is usually cheaper for the first few years (we’ll show you an example in a moment). To add to that, if your rent is less than a potential mortgage payment then you can use that extra cash for savings, investments, or retirement.

Buy – A moment ago we mentioned a word that is very important to home owners: “equity.” Every payment that you make, whether it’s your down payment or your monthly mortgage payment, you’re increasing your equity in your home. When making your monthly payment some of it is going toward the principle balance of your mortgage. This means you’re gaining equity every month you live in your home. There’s just no comparison for this advantage when put up against renting.

Timing

When looking back on life with the luxury of hindsight we realize that timing plays a crucial role in our decision making. Since hindsight doesn’t play a role in the decisions we make in the present, let’s look at what considerations do play a role if you’re asking, is this the right time to buy?

Rent – For the person who is unsure where they’ll live in the next few years, renting is probably your best option. Renting affords you the advantage of being able to uproot and move to an area closer to your job. It’s easier to move to a different part of the country, or maybe a fun location like near the beach or downtown in a major city. Rent payments and housing prices are high in these areas. You might not want to stick around too long.

Buy – The cost of purchasing a home and moving is an important factor to consider when thinking about how long you plan on living in your home. It’s expensive to sell a home. Real Estate agents make a lot of money off the sale of your home. That’s money that you’re paying. Not to mention that if you buy again you’ll have to pay the closing costs for that transaction. The flip side is that you will probably make a profit off of selling your home. The point is the more buying and selling you do, whether you’re savvy or not, the more fees you’ll pay.

Rent vs Buy

With all of these variables in mind, it’s time to create some examples that will show you when it’s worth it to rent versus buy. We’ll use the tools we provided such as the rent versus buy tool above, and then plug in the median home prices weighed against average rent costs of three major cities. These figures are provided by trulia.com or Zillow.com, and rentjungle.com respectively. Plug in your own rent amount and the value of the home you have your eye on. You’ll find out for yourself if you can afford it and how long it will take for you to save money.

You probably get the sense that asking if renting or buying is better, the answer is hard to come by. And that’s actually a good place to start. This is a decision that requires a lot of care. Weighing all the pros and cons is important, consider the right factors.

For more information on apartments in Raleigh, NC, contact Auston Grove.

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Before Signing Your Lease – Apartments in Raleigh, NC

Before Signing Your Lease – Apartments in Raleigh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, November 16, 2016

While they are anything but entertaining, a lease agreement is one contract you really should read before signing. Before an agreement is signed, it is often easy to address specific terms. But, once it is signed, resolving even minor issues can be difficult.

A good lease agreement avoids unwelcome surprises. A landlord and tenant nearly always discuss the rent, when it is due, and the length of the lease term. But, unless the lease agreement makes it clear, there can be disputes over things like who is responsible for repairs, property taxes, and insurance; whether there are any automatic renewals or rent increases; if or when late fees or interest charges apply; and in what situations deductions may be taken from the security deposit.

Concerning repairs, a residential landlord is generally responsible unless the repairs are needed due to the tenant’s carelessness.

With respect to security deposits, the lease should state what is expected of the tenant upon moving out, what will happen if those expectations are not met, and how much of the security deposit will be refunded.

Some lease agreements include options to renew the lease. To avoid having to move again, a tenant may want to negotiate the right to renew at the end of the initial term.

Wise landlords also contact a would-be tenant’s prior landlord for a rental history. Some perform credit checks on all prospective tenants. Likewise, some prudent tenants ask around to neighbors and may even try to contact the prior tenant for information about the property and to find out how responsive the landlord has been to maintenance and repair issues. Whether you are a landlord or a tenant, doing your homework before renting or signing can pay big dividends.

For more information on apartments in Raleigh, NC, contact Auston Grove.

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11 Signs You're Not Ready to Buy a House – Raleigh, NC

11 Signs You're Not Ready to Buy a House – Raleigh, NC

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Making the leap from renting to buying is thrilling and liberating. But it's also a big decision, both for your future and your finances.

It's a long-term commitment that requires strong financial standing, and in many ways it's about more than just money.

If any of the following signs strike a chord with you, you may want to delay the home-buying process.

You have a low credit score

Before considering home ownership, you'll want to check your credit score.

The higher your score, the better the interest rate on your mortgage will be. Good credit can mean significantly lower monthly payments, so if your score is not great, consider delaying this big purchase until you've built up your credit.

You're doing it as an investment

If someone asks why you want to buy a house and your first answer is something along the lines of "Because I'm wasting money on rent" or "Because it's a good investment," you might not be mentally prepared for all the responsibilities that come with home ownership.

When you look at the average price increase of a home across the country over the last 100 years, it's only about 3%. If you take away extra costs plus inflation, you're not really making any money on average on a single-family home.

It's smarter to look for a house that meets non-monetary goals: It's in your dream neighborhood or it's a good place to start a family. A home is a utility, not an investment.

You have to direct more than 30% of your income toward monthly payments

Personal finance experts say a good rule of thumb is to make sure the total monthly payment doesn't consume more than 30% of your take-home pay.

Any more than that, and your finances are going to be tight, leaving you financially vulnerable when something inevitably goes wrong.

While there are a few exceptions, aim to spend no more than one-third of your take-home pay on housing.

You don't have a fully funded emergency savings account

And no, your emergency fund is not your down payment.

We all receive unexpected financial setbacks. Someone gets sick. The insurance company denies a medical claim. A job is suddenly lost. However life intrudes, the bank still expects to receive our monthly mortgage payments ... Finance your emergency fund. Then think about purchasing a home. If you don't have an emergency fund and do own a house, chances are good you will someday find yourself in financial turmoil.

Have the equivalent of a few years' worth of living expenses set aside in case there is a job loss or other surprise.

Unlike a rental arrangement with a one- or two-year contract and known termination clauses, defaulting on a mortgage can do major damage to your credit report. In addition, a quick sale is not always possible or equitable for a seller.

You aren't putting anything into savings

Even with a full emergency fund, you should still be able to continue putting money away for other goals.

If you're saving money every month, that means your cash flow is in good shape, which is a good sign you're ready to buy a home.

If you can't spare anything more than the mortgage payment, consider putting off purchasing a home until your cash flow is more stable.

You can't afford a 10% down payment

Technically, you don't always have to put any money down when financing a home today, but if you can't afford to put at least 10% down, you may want to reconsider buying.

Ideally, you'll be able to put 20% down — anything lower and you will have to pay for private mortgage insurance (PMI), which is a safety net for the bank in case you fail to make your payments. PMI can cost between 0.5% and 1.50% of mortgage, depending on the size of your down payment and your credit score — that's an additional $1,000 a year on a $200,000 home.

The more money you can put down toward the initial purchase of a home, the lower your monthly mortgage payment. That's because you will need to borrow less money to finance the home. This can save you tens of thousands of dollars over the life of the loan.

To get an idea of the savings you'll have to put away, check out how much you need to save each day to put a down payment on a house in major US cities.

You're planning other big expenses in the next few years

It's important to consider your housing budget within the context of your future goals. Keep in mind the next couple of years down the road and what you have coming up.

You plan on moving within the next five years

Home ownership, like stock investing, works best as a long-term proposition. It takes at least five years to have a reasonable chance of breaking even on a housing purchase. For the first few years, your mortgage payments mostly pay off the interest and not the principal. It is recommended to stay put for at least 10 years.

The longer you stay in your house, the more you save. If you sell through a traditional realtor, you pay that person a huge fee — usually 6% of the selling price. Divide that by just a few years, and it hits you a lot harder than if you had held the house for ten or twenty years.

Not to mention, moving costs can be exorbitant on their own.

You won't be able to keep up with other goals

Don't feel like you need to have every penny worth of debt paid off before you can purchase a home. But do a deep dive into why you have debt and how you're planning to deal with it, from student loans to credit card charges.

Why do you have the credit card debt? Was it just a random occurrence where you had to put something on the credit card and you know you're going to pay it off soon? Or have you been spending more than you make and it's increasing over time?

It's okay to still be paying off your student loans or paying down past credit card debt. But if the added costs that come with buying a house — mortgage payments, taxes, and repairs — impede your ability to continue putting money toward those goals each month, you might want to hold off for now and let your other expenses take priority.

You're deep in debt

While it's okay to have some debt, if it's a significant enough amount, it could hinder your ability to buy a house at all. If your debt is high, home ownership is going to be a stretch.

When you apply for a mortgage, you'll be asked about everything you owe — from car and student loans to credit card debt.

If the combination of that debt with the amount you want to borrow exceeds 43% of your income, you will have a hard time getting a mortgage. Your 'debt-to-income ratio' will be deemed too high, and mortgage issuers will consider you at high risk for a future default.

You've only considered the sticker price

You have to look at much more than just the sticker price of the home. There are a mountain of hidden costs — from closing fees to taxes — that can add up to more than $9,000 each year, real estate marketplace. And that number will only jump if you live in a major US city.

You'll have to consider things such as property tax, insurance, utilities, moving costs, renovations, and perhaps the most overlooked expense: maintenance.

The actual purchase price is not the most important cost. What's important is how much it's going to cost to maintain that house.

For more information on apartments in Raleigh, NC contact Auston Grove.

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Auston Grove Apartments

1160 Auston Grove Drive, Raleigh, NC 27610

Call: 866-220-3907
Email UsAustonGrove.PropertySite.HHHunt@aptleasing.info
View Map

Opens: Monday-Friday: 9A-6P | Saturday: 10A-5P | Sunday: 1P-5P

$800-$1250