By Steve Fisher, Director of Mortgage Loan Administration, Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA)

The decision to purchase a home can be complicated. Even when choosing a place to rent you must consider the factors of location, family needs and monthly costs. Yet, homeownership has numerous advantages when compared to renting. Owning a home provides opportunities for families where benefits continue to grow each year you live in the home.

Historically, homeownership has been the primary source of personal wealth building. Although never a guarantee, over time as homes appreciate and the homeowner makes monthly mortgage payments, equity in the property accumulates.

Having a fixed mortgage payment each month helps homeowners avoid costly rent increases that tenants can face. Housing costs are typically the largest monthly expenditure for a family budget. As other family expenditures change over years, stable housing costs are a true advantage.

Owning a home provides pride in ownership as you improve your home to fit your family preferences and style. Most rental arrangements do not permit changes as simple as painting a room. Many home improvements can increase the value of your home as well.

When considering a family move, to be closer to work or for a growing family consider discussing the advantages of owning a home with a REALTOR® or one of THDA’s participating lenders. A THDA Great Choice loan could benefit your family for years to come. The Great Choice Loan program offers down payment and closing costs to eligible borrowers; making homeownership closer than you think.