Re: When should I buy Hakama
Hakama rules vary from place to place but its really a question for your Sensei. In my experience this is not linked to rank directly but more to demonstration of the attributes associated with a position of responsibility within the dojo.
Within my own group it is usually awarded around 3rd kyu for males but usually earlier for females.
As for the belt thing - wear the white belt or your clothes will fall off !
ps. just seen Jasons reply. Agree.