Owning a home, we are often told, makes good financial sense. It allows a person to build equity and enjoy the benefits of appreciation over time.
But there are other reasons people yearn for home ownership. In studies conducted by The Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University, Americans were asked their most important reasons for wanting a home. While the ability to build wealth was mentioned, four other reasons ranked higher:
Having a good neighborhood in which to raise children: Even those without children noted that finding safe neighborhoods with excellent schools are top reasons for buying a home.
Having a place where you feel safe: Homes provide the kind of shelter and security people can depend on.
Having more space: Compared to apartments and other living arrangements, homes offer more space for a growing family, or those bringing elderly members back into the fold.
Having more control: Renters are at the whim of landlords who may restrict them from painting walls, owning pets and other actions. Homeowners gain complete control of their surroundings and the freedom to live as they like.