I'm looking to start a niche social network site. I estimate at least 20k members. My question is this. I've been looking into getting a dedicated server. They average like 150$ a month from companies like godaddy etc. So I looked into buying one and found them for like $1500 and up. I have also heard stories of hosting companies screwing people over and things so I thought it might be best to buy a server. So here is what I am wondering. It seems actually cheaper over the course of 3 years to own a server and run it. If I have Verizon Fios and a server is that pretty much all I need or do the hosting companies provide you with something more?