Not long ago, buying a home was the best investment you could make. Not only did it provide a place to live, but it provided instant wealth for many homeowners through rapid home-price appreciation. Renting seemed risky. If you didn't own a home, you'd miss out on equity buildup that would bankroll a move to a bigger, better home. In this market, the realistic way to look at a home is a place you want to live. Buying a home doesn't guarantee that you'll make a big return on your investment. You might if you stay long enough. Over the long term, home-price appreciation usually outpaces the inflation rate. However, this varies from one locale to the next. HOUSE HUNTING TIP: Today, many homeowners who want to move to a bigger or smaller home are choosing to rent for a while rather t...
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