Lower mortgage rates and moderating home prices are making purchasing a home over renting more tempting in several of the nation’s metros, according to realtor.com®’s newly released Rent vs. Buy report. While the gap is starting to narrow between buying and renting nationwide, it is still more expensive to purchase a home in the majority of larger metros than rent.
The median monthly cost to purchase a U.S. home was $1,600 in the fourth quarter of 2019, about 30% of the national median household income. Meanwhile, the median monthly rent was $1,319, which represents about 25% of the median household income.
The report analyzes the cost of buying versus renting in 593 counties across the U.S. in the fourth quarter of 2019. It’s cheaper to buy than rent in 16% of the counties tracked with populations of 100,000 or more—up from 12% a year earlier.