Generally speaking homes appreciate in value by approximately 4% or 5% per year, however this will vary from year to year and from neighborhood to neighborhood. Your rate of return on real estate may be higher than many other investments you make.
When renting a home you are usually limited to the changes/improvements you can make. When you own a home you can make almost any changes you want (subject to local planning restrictions). You benefit from living in the environment of your choice plus, in many cases, your improvements add to the value or saleability of your home.
Paying for your home depends for many people on their financial status and in most cases a mortgage is used to fund the purchase.
It is important to remember that your home may be at risk if you do not keep up repayments on a mortgage or other loan secured on it.