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Rent or buy?

Hi everyone,
My name is Jason, 23, from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Currently, I am looking to get a place of my own. 
Currently I am close to signing an agreement on a nice little modern updated 1 bedroom basement suite. The agreement is on a 6 month lease, paying $725 a month, as well as 40% of the utilities. My decision was that I may not be ready for purchase, but wonder if it will be better for me to buy. I have booked an appointment with Mortgage Professionals, to ask some questions and possibly get pre-approval on a home. I think preferably (if buying) I would like to find a place with an upstairs as well as a basement suite with a separate entrance that I could rent out.
To get back to my financials, I will be honest as to what I have available. I accumulated quite some debt a few years ago (Student loans, line of credit, vehicle loan, personal loan to finance a much needed mattress/bed as well as a less than needed bedroom set) and have paid it all off entirely. My credit is very good. In TFSAs, I have approximately $8000+ put away. I have a GIC put away on a 3 year term, which (only $1000 anyways). I have about $1000+ in my chequings account. The nice thing about the company I work for, is that in the union we have an RRSP contribution. I have accumulated a total over $9500 in this plan. I mention this because I have heard you may use RRSP for first time home buyers without being taxed as long as you pay it back within 15 years of borrowing it. I know I don't have a lot, but wonder if I have enough to enter home ownership.
I appreciate anyone and everyone who have taken the time to read through my post. I kindly welcome any and all comments and am certainly grateful for all of your knowledge and recommendations based on the information I have provided. Thank you for your time.
-Jason
  • September 23 2013 - US
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Answers (1)

Hi Jason:  When my clients ask me if they should rent or buy, I suggest they talk to their lender to see what they can qualify for a loan. Then if you find you can qualify for a loan, use this tool to see if it is better to rent or purchase: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/business/buy-rent-calculator.html?nl=your-money&emc=your-moneyemb8_20120618&_r=0
  • September 23 2013
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