Buying vs. renting: Where buying a home is the clear-cut winner

Aly J. Yale
The Mortgage Reports contributor

Flock to Florida

The Sunshine State has more than just great weather and sandy beaches. According to a new analysis, it also has four cities where mortgage payments clock in significantly lower than local rents.

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More affordable mortgage

Thinking of buying a home? Florida should probably be on your radar. According to a new analysis by LendingTree, in four major Florida cities, it’s significantly more affordable to own a place than to rent one.

In Miami, for example, media rents clock in at $1,477. A median mortgage payment? That’s just $1,215 — equating to more than $3,100 savings across the year.

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Orlando, Tampa and Jacksonville also have big discrepancies between rent and mortgages. In Orlando, the monthly rent is $1,261. Homeowners, on the other hand, pay just $1,036 per month — a difference of $227 a month or $2,724 annually.

Other major U.S. cities where mortgages come in more affordable than rents include Virginia Beach, Virginia; Denver; Las Vegas; Washington, D.C.; Riverside, California; and Charlotte, North Carolina.

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Size matters

The analysis also looked at affordability as it pertains to home size. According to the data, two- and three-bedroom properties are almost always more affordable to buy than to rent.

Two-bedrooms are cheaper to buy in all but nine of the nation’s top 50 metros while buying a three-bedroom home is more affordable across all large markets.

“For average-sized houses, buying is usually a better deal,” said Tendayi Kapfidze, LendingTree’s chief economist.

Homes on the super-small size (studios and one-bedrooms), as well as those on the larger side (five bedrooms or more), are often more affordable to rent than buy.

Verify your new rate (May 30th, 2020)

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Verify your new rate (May 30th, 2020)