It’s cheaper to rent than buy in more than half of US markets

by Steve Randall10 Jan 2019

Rising home prices and lagging wage growth means that renting a 3-bedroom single-family home is cheaper than buying a median priced home in 59% of counties.

An analysis from ATTOM Data Solutions found that renting if more affordable in 422 of 755 counties including the nation’s 18 most populated; and in 27 of 40 counties with populations of 1 million or more.

They include Los Angeles County, California; Cook County (Chicago), Illinois; Harris County (Houston), Texas; Maricopa County (Phoenix), Arizona; and San Diego County, California.

"With rental affordability outpacing home affordability in the majority of US  housing markets, and home prices rising faster than rental rates, the American dream of owning a home, may be just that — a dream," said Jennifer von Pohlmann, director of content and PR at ATTOM Data Solutions. "With home price appreciation increasing annually at an average of 6.7% in those counties analyzed for this report and rental rates increasing an average of 3.5%, coupled with the fact that home prices are outpacing wages in 80% of the counties, renting a home is clearly becoming the more attractive option in this volatile housing market."

Home prices outpacing rents
Median home prices rose faster than average fair market rents in 531 of the 755 counties analyzed in the report, including Cook County (Chicago), Illinois; Harris County (Houston), Texas; Maricopa County (Phoenix), Arizona; Kings County (Brooklyn), New York; Queens County, New York; and Riverside County, California.


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