I saw several threads about buying house in US posted in 2005 or 2009. I am posting this thread to talk about current scenario (2011/12). Last year people who purchased houses gained 8k in tax rebates. Perhaps it was good time to buy, but there was an added risk of job market.This year interest rates are still low abt 3 to 4%. It is still a buyer's market. Within Houston, the suburbs are still experiencing a 10% drop in rates thus making it suitable to buy a house. Central and 10 miles around Houston housing prices have remained stable and have even appreciated by 3 %. I wish to hear from people who recently invested in Houses. One obviously must think through job security, emergency funds, children education and retirement funds. If you are planning on returning to India, one should look at the resale values ( My guess is when the prices are low, you should stand to gain when they go up again). As a child I grew up in dad's quarters, which were like spacious apartments. Condos and town-homes are not bad investment ideas in my view, especially I am not too much into interior decorations or gardening. House is like a white elephant, where one needs to maintain it to keep it pretty especially when both partners are working. However it maybe nice when friends/family visit. Perhaps a systematic approach is to list pros and cons, list each in agreement with your partner and that will help you decide better. Like the title says, do share here your pros and cons. As for me pros to buying a house 1. Plenty of space( I always wanted a separate room for hobbies and meditation ,a spacious kitchen and living room, room for my kid and parents etc, when friends come over to stay or for parties). 2. Money well spent and not wasted away. 3. Feeling of belonging to a community and good schools for kids 4. Yard for gardening/relaxing/kids to play. Cons 1. More money than I want to spare, just for the excess space ( taxes, interest etc..10K I have heard goes into taxes annually).. 2. Fewer dollars left for traveling or other investments(like stocks , Indian real estate/ pursuits That delays when you can do things.. 3. Maintenance. I don't want to sound bad, but a friend says it s like being maid servant keeping it all in balance. Weekends would all be gone cleaning ..in worst scenario 4. Kids do not learn value of adjusting in smaller spaces and limited resources. They have high standards set early in life. My mom says that s not the case though, she says the kids wanting more is a good thing ( setting higher standards than what they grew up with is natural)... 5. Tendency to accumulate junk unwanted items. If you already have a house, additionally please share steps to definitely think while we go through the process of buying houses and any mistake that you think I can avoid.