I'm currently looking to buy a house to live in for 2-3 years, and then rent it out. Most recommendations I see are to buy a house if owning for 5+ years, but I'm not sure how that advice applies if I'd like to rent the place afterwards.
Having done some math, it seems to me that the break-even point for me between buying and renting is roughly at the 2 year point. After 2 years, I will have paid $36,000 in rent, and if I would have sold the house after 2 years I would have lost $36,000 in selling the house after closing costs and for opportunity cost for money that I would have put into the stock market instead if I had rented. So after living in the home for 2 years I come out ahead, and if I rent the house then I could earn equity by having a renter.
My math accounts for mortgage payments, property taxes, maintenance, home insurance, home value appreciation, stock market appreciation, the rent I'm currently paying, and tax deductions.
Does this line of thinking seem to make sense, or am I missing another angle at figuring out if this is a good way to evaluate home ownership?