We both own and rent. We've got a long term renter in our home and currently rent in a city far from there. We actually rented our house the first time we traveled, and realize we should have sold, because that was right before the crash, and our house went down 50% in value. Hindsight... as they say. We knew we didn't want to return, but the house offered some sort of security, but now it's just this albatross.
If/When we come back this time, we should be able to rent though probably not where we currently are. Our lease doesn't allow for sub-letting, so we basically are giving up a nice, inexpensive, rent-controlled house, which is REALLY difficult, but in the end I know the experience will override this comfort.
We currently live in a really expensive city, and I find that I spend a lot of time working in order to survive, and not really thrive here with my kids. They're at a great age for travel, and I want to spend as much time with them as I can before they get older and move on into their own lives. When I was 2 my parents took me on their adventure around the US to 37 states (in a VW bug) so I suppose that's where my budget family travel really got started. I got into my own sense of traveling when I was 17 and it changed my perspective completely.
We took our twins on a year abroad when they were 2.5. They're 11 now, and we're ready to go again. It's taken me 2 years of mulling, and overcoming the fear, but I think I've passed over some magical threshold and now I can't see how we can't go. It seems a perfect time, and I look forward to the adventure. My family and most friends know that we've been thinking about it for the last two years, so it should come of no surprise to anyone when I tell them...it's on!