Agent

Homeowner debates renting, buying in Alaska

Price appreciation, tax breaks at heart of issue

The real estate event of the summer
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DEAR BOB: My home has appreciated in market value far beyond my wildest dreams. But I will soon be moving to Fairbanks, Alaska, and cannot decide whether to sell my home or rent it to tenants. If I rent, I can get about $300 per month above my mortgage payment. If I sell, I can take the tax-free profit and buy a dream home in Fairbanks. However, homes there are not appreciating very quickly. Without a big down payment, I would have to buy a less desirable home. But I want to be prudent. I'd hate to sell now and see my home go up in value even more. Should I sell or rent? – Brian R. DEAR BRIAN: Homeowners all over the U.S. share your situation. Most of our homes have appreciated in market value far above our expectations. It's a great challenge and opportunity to own homes that have highly appreciated. Purchase Bob Bruss reports online. The key question to ask yourself is, "Do I expect to return to this area within the next three years?" If your answer is "no," then I suggest y...