Renting Versus Buying A House
Buying a home is a huge decision, and picking the right mortgage is a huge part of that process! Here's why the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage might be one of your best options when it comes to buying a house.
renting versus buying a house
Is it better to buy or rent? Whether renting is better than buying depends on many factors. NAR members help their clients answer this question with statistics and studies on home owners and renters as well as financing options and tips.
The pros and cons of renting are often the inverse of those for buying. On the plus side, a landlord takes care of repairs, and you have the flexibility to move more easily. However, you have to abide by the landlord's prices and rules, and you don't get the financial benefits of building equity or deducting taxes.
Low inventory is poised to remain a defining factor of the real estate market. The number of available homes on the market keeps dropping. Private investors are snapping up properties. Boomers are doubling up by buying second houses. And America has been underbuilding for at least a decade.
So the question isn't renting vs buying a home. It's actually, What season of life am I in now? In addition to making those considerations, you also want to remember that personal finance is rarely just a math problem. There are emotional considerations to make and personal and family situations to think through that can tip the scales in favor of renting or buying.
In the real world, numbers cannot reflect many intangible human elements involved in the Rent vs. Buy question, such as the value of homeownership or not having to deal with landlords. Sometimes, buyers want the ability to do things such as paint their walls a specific color or house ten cats without hearing complaints from landlords or neighbors. Conversely, renters might prefer the peace of mind that comes with a predictable monthly rent instead of paying a large upfront down payment and closing costs. Whether renting or buying, consumers need to factor personal preferences into this decision.
In the U.S. today, homeownership is as American as bald eagles and hot dogs. Moreover, the federal government offers tax incentives for owning a home, a strong reason not to rent. Furthermore, many believe that mortgages build equity. Considering these factors, one can easily see why buying seems to make more sense than renting, at least on the surface.
Owning a home also includes some one-time transaction costs and recurring maintenance costs. The former mainly refers to the costs associated with buying and selling the house, such as the down payment, closing costs, and commission fees. After adding such expenses, the cost of buying and selling a house can be very high, often reaching 10% or more of the home's value.
The time one intends to stay in the house is probably the most critical variable in determining whether to buy or rent, assuming a buyer can afford both. As a general rule of thumb, the longer the intended stay, the more it makes sense (financially) to buy. Otherwise, one should consider renting. Typically, owning a house involves significant one-time buying or selling costs. Compared with renting a similar home, the recurring maintenance cost is lower than the monthly rental fee. If one stays in a house long enough, it justifies the massive buying and selling costs and makes the average total monthly cost of owning a home lower than renting.
Our Rent vs. Buy Calculator above can estimate the minimum period required for buying to make sense over renting. If one plans to stay in the house for less than the minimum time of residence, it is financially wise to rent. Otherwise, buying makes more sense. This number can vary based on both personal life situations and the region where one lives.
Our buy vs. rent tool builds one model calculating all of the relevant costs of owning and a different model including all of the costs of renting. Next we figure out the tax consequences of buying a home (we calculate taxes at the federal, state and local level) and consider how home value appreciation and mortgage payments impact your equity in the property. Once the models have calculated all of the costs of owning and renting we compare the two in order to show you how long you need to stay in a property for buying to make more sense than renting.
Rental payments, by contrast, have no such advantages. While a portion of each mortgage payment goes toward raising your stake in your home by increasing your equity, rental payments go entirely to your landlord and tend to grow over time as rental prices increase. In the long run, the costs of renting can be much higher than buying.
For a long time, the common wisdom was that buying a home was a far better financial choice than renting one. As home prices across much of the country marched upward during the 20th century, a house was considered the safest investment around.
Today, there is no clear answer to the rent vs. buy question. In some cities, and for some individuals, buying a home may make more sense, while for others, renting a home may be the better choice. This makes it even more important to run the numbers and see what is best for you and your family.
With that in mind, SmartAsset took a closer look at the data on renting and buying in the largest U.S. markets. We determined the breakeven point, the time it would take for a homeowner to recuperate those upfront costs of buying a home. (For more on our methodology, check here.)
Developments like the boom in tech jobs and increased migration to sunny West Coast cities have shifted housing economics towards renting in some parts of the country, while in other areas, like the South and Texas, buying is still usually the better bet.
These three western cities are experiencing strong population growth, which has put some upward pressure on home prices. In these cities, residents who are comfortable staying in one place for the medium- or long-term should at least consider buying. On average, they will recuperate the high up-front costs of purchasing (instead of renting) in five to six years.
Methodology To find the best places to own a home, SmartAsset analyzed data on rent and home prices in counties across the U.S., and compared the financial advantages of buying or renting in each area.
Rent or buy? Apartment? Town home? Single-family house? There are many decisions to make. You will have to look at what kind of housing suits your lifestyle and whether renting or buying is a better choice for you at this time.
Real estate has gotten so expensive that in most American cities, residents would save money by renting, according to a recent report from Realtor.com. In 45 of the country's 50 largest metro areas, renting is cheaper than buying, the real estate research service found, which based its analysis on the cost of buying a starter home with a 7% down payment and included average taxes, insurance and homeowners association fees.
Nothing better illustrates this than running the numbers based on 30 years. Over that period, buying will have cost you $1,161,502 (not allowing for equity gains), compared with renting a comparable house, which would cost you $1,189,976.
To find out how your area stacks up, you can use this rent-versus-buy calculator from the New York Times. Using details about your ideal home and rent information specific to your market, the calculator can help you determine if renting or buying makes more sense for your specific real estate market.
As you probably realize by now, buying a house is pretty expensive. But you may not realize all of the costs that go into the deal. Before you make your decision about buying vs. renting, consider this breakdown of costs, including:
Ultimately, the decision to rent an apartment or house or buy a home in Seattle is personal and depends on several factors, such as your finances, your desire to stay long-term in the area, and where exactly you want to live. This article will delve into renting vs buying in Seattle, helping potential residents make an informed decision on the great home debate: keep renting or buy a place of your own?
Deciding if buying a house in Seattle is right for you is a complex decision that requires careful consideration of various factors. Here are a few key factors to consider when evaluating your readiness to buy a home:
For example, when buying a home, you will need to come up with a down payment, closing costs, and often pay for property inspections, insurance, and other associated fees. These costs can add up to tens of thousands of dollars, making homeownership more financially demanding upfront than renting. The lower upfront costs of renting can be a benefit for those who may not have a large amount of savings or who are not yet ready to make a significant financial commitment.
Our Rent vs. Buy Calculator can help you determine whether you should rent or buy a house in your unique situation. After entering in the potential costs of renting or buying a home in the area you are moving to, the calculator can tell you how much you can expect to pay in both scenarios going forward. In many cases, it may prove more affordable to invest in a home than to deal with the rising costs of rent.
When you compare renting versus buying a home, you may wonder which choice is right for you. Factors like your debt-to-income ratio, credit scores and the level of risk and responsibility you would like to take on could all influence that decision.
Somewhere between one year and 40 years is the crossover point, where buying becomes better than renting. It might be 5 years. It might be 10 years. It might be 15 years. It might be 20 years. It might be 25 years.
Taking the time to truly look at all the aspects of each option can help you plan your life to move in the direction that benefits you the most. If you plan on buying a home, there is a ton of information online to help you. Start with this article that explains how to buy your first house. It will give you a quick overview of the home buying process and help you identify where to start. Good luck and happy house hunting! 041b061a72