In general, people buy homes when they can afford the down payment and monthly mortgage payments and when it makes financial sense. Conventional wisdom is that buying a house and paying down a loan is more economically sensible than making rent payments, according to Forbes.
A healthy stash of cash is helpful when making an investment in a home, according to USA Today. Buying a house also makes more sense when a person intends to stay put for an extended period rather than moving. From an investment perspective, buying a house when home prices are relatively low offers the best opportunity for value appreciation.