Buy vs. Rent
It's a question everyone asks from time to time, and the answer you get always depends on who you ask. There are as many "experts" that will advocate buying as renting, and the internet is full of opinions on the matter. Certainly, some times are better than others to buy, and many people are hesitant to buy on Guam because of the length of their stay and perceived issues with owning property on a remote island.
One of the biggest factors of course is the cost of buying vs. renting. It’s impossible to estimate the "average cost of rent" because of difference in the types of property available. On Guam, you might pay $600 per month for a small rental unit near the University, or $6000 for an ocean view luxury condominium. The more compromises you're willing to make, the cheaper you can live.
Keep in mind, the majority of rentals are priced for Guam’s military market. Rental prices for more desirable locations begins at around $1900, the lower end of the military housing allowance. So, if Uncle Sam isn’t paying your rent for you, it might be wise to consider purchasing a home that you can build some equity in, or at the very least, get your money back when you leave.
Buying, while certainly more costly than renting, offers many advantages. The chance to build equity in a home over a period of years is usually a pretty good bet, and the idea of putting money towards something you actually own every month instead of paying someone else's mortgage is a lot easier to swallow. Buying offers distinct tax advantages as well.
As mentioned, there are thousands of resources on the internet, and as many opinions. We recommend you thoroughly research the topic and get the information you need to make the right decision for you. If you decide it’s time to plunge into the world of home ownership, we’ll be there to help you every step of the way.