When our last computer was on the outs we weighed our options for our 3rd ever computer purchase. In the previous 8 years that we were married we have owned 2 Compaq computers. Both of them were of the separate monitor and tower kinds. I personally checked out computers online and in stores and decided that a laptop would do all that we needed it to do and it was just as cheap if not cheaper than most tower driven computers. We settled on the $499(after all rebates) Toshiba laptop. It has been wonderful. I'll probably never own a modem towered computer again.
The laptop takes up so much less space. We've also taken the laptop on long trips and it has acted as a DVD player, gaming system and music player. I've been able to use it at my mother's house in St. Louis and conveniently I don't have to remember any of my passwords for any of my accounts that I use. It also conveniently travels to other places in the house were I have been able to search for cars and such while still being in the same room with my wife....meaning good quality time. I can surf while she either reads or watches TV. Maybe it has kept us closer and not in separate rooms.
So if you are faced with a computer purchase in the future I highly recommend buying a laptop, decent price and convenience.