We’ve all heard the different calculations: You’ll need to spend a third of your salary on rent. Or don’t spend more than half. No, it’s actually half of your gross, but a third of your net.
Write out a monthly budget, and you’ll still be stymied by the question of utilities (included or no?) and the inevitable unexpected, which may be an oxymoron but is nonetheless accurate.
Real estate website and research powerhouse Trulia keeps track of the housing recovery with its complex barometric tool (left) inspired by the mechanical engineering of great weather-trackers. And the news is good–sort of.
Last year around this time, existing home sales were 10 percent below where they are now. New home construction jumped almost 50 percent last month. A 1 percent dip in the ugly stuff–delinquency, foreclosure–is also a positive. Taking all that into account, Trulia Chief Economist Jed Kolko inched the barometer up to 56 from 54, saying the improvement was “even better than it looked.”
A partial screenshot of the Trulia tool.
Trulia has a helpful new tool on its website that allows users to enter certain variables in markets across the country and determine which is the better bet for them financially: buying a home or renting. The news is not good for defiant, perennial renters, unless they live in New York or in California.