Never buy earthquake insurance. But yep earth is fragile and the entire west coast could disappear tomorrow or in a million years. If you somehow survive don't think you will care about a lost house lol. Long term anywhere land can be wiped out by a variety of man made or natural disasters.
“Somehow” is not an accurate estimation of risks. There are state reports that use data from various outcome models. The death toll won’t be that large and most of the infra will be restored within a month. It’s unlikely that you will die in this earthquake. If your building is built in compliance with recent California codes you will walk out without major injuries, but you will have to rebuild the house.
Well then that isn't a big earthquake. Make sure your house is well built so you dont have to rebuild but if you not a big problem. Most homes can be rebuilt for 500 to 1m. The land is where all the value is and government will help incentivize it. Retrofitting isn't very costly and you can do a steel foundation for under 100k.
couple of factors to consider : with more apartments coming up, the rents are getting stabilized or not rising crazy, for the high housing prices the rental income does not cover the mortgage with a 20% down. If the housing prices gets a correction or the mortgage interest deduction goes up, buying will be better
You need to compare two specific properties that satisfy your needs. One of them you could rent, the other buy. Now calculate how much money you will pay to own the property (subtract annual principal payment from all other costs of owning the house: taxes, interest, insurance, maintenance, etc) and compare that with the rent payments. It may or may not make sense depending on the kind of mortgage you get. With ARM, it could be cheaper to “own” for a few years without building equity. It’s all subjective, but renting obviously offers you a lot more choices, so it’s easier to win by renting. You can argue that a house is an investment, but it’s important to diversify your investments and most people don’t have enough cash to do that while also owning a house.
I would think you knew the basics being employed at Intuit. TC or GTFO.
When you buy, your current mortgage rate is the highest you’ll ever have to pay for housing. (Mortgage isn’t inflation adjusted so in 25 years that mortgage is looking darn cheap. Plus you may get an opportunity to refi at a lower rate in the future) When you rent, your current rent is the cheapest you’ll have for housing. (Landlords will always raise your rent. At best the increase is just the rate of inflation but at worst, the market you live in explodes and your rent could double in just a few short years).
There are all kinds of other things to add to it like deductions and rent control but the above fundamental argument will always hold true.