You have reached that time in life when buying a home seems like the perfect next step. You have completed your schooling, you have a steady job and everyone from friends to family is pressuring you into buying your own place. Buying a home is one of the biggest decisions you will make in your life and you should do it when you feel it is the right thing to do regardless of what everyone else thinks around you.

You need to be financially and emotionally ready to buy a home of your own and you should time the market. Below is a list of red flags which signal that it may be in fact better to hold off on buying until conditions improve.

1. Home values are sliding: Many people think that the perfect time to buy a home is when the home prices are falling. Of course this makes sense since they predict that soon enough home prices will increase and you will get to reap the benefits of buying when prices are low and then selling when prices are high. However, there remains the possibility that home prices can keep on declining, or remain stable and only start to increase years after. Very few people have mastered the ability to predict the real estate market. Therefore, do not go solely by this concept when deciding whether it’s time to buy a home.

2. Rents are affordable: If rent in the city is affordable, it might make sense to rent for a longer period of time. In the meantime put your money in a savings account or invest it in stocks, bonds, or a mutual fund. An investment advisor will best assist you. This way you will have enough money saved up, when the time is right to purchase a home of your own.

3. Interest rates are high: When interest rates are high the cost of financing a home is extremely expensive. Don’t jump to buying a house when interest rates go down, as you may not be ready in the long term of keeping up with the costs since they can easily rise back again. Consider what happened in the 1980s, mortgage rates hovered between 7% and 9% and then rose to as high as 19%.

4. High monthly home payments: Consider the monthly home costs you will incur. Remember that the more you have saved up for a down payment the lower your financing costs will be. If your monthly housing costs add up to more than 30% of you monthly gross income then hold off on the purchase.

5. Commitment issues: Think about the life style you want to have. Buying a home only makes sense if you see yourself in the place for the next 5 to 7 years, this means that if you want to travel around the world and do not see yourself in one place then it doesn’t make sense to buy a home even if you can afford it.

Buying a home is a serious decision which requires a lot of research and analysis. Inform yourself about the local real estate market, and speak to professionals who will be able to help you such as lenders, real estate agents, contractors.