The City Where It Is Cheaper to Rent a Home Than Buy

In general, the cost of a home in the United States has skyrocketed. In some markets close to big cities, the prices have risen in the middle double digits. Part of this is because people have fled big cities during the pandemic. The other is that mortgage rates are near multidecade lows. The real estate market has heated up so much that the supply of homes for sale has plunged.

The price of residential rentals has moved the other direction in some of America’s largest cities, particularly those on each coast where rents have traditionally been the highest in the nation. As people fled these cities because of the COVID-19 pandemic, occupancy rates plunged, and along with them, rents. Without a moratorium on evicts, the situation for unoccupied apartments might be worse.

LendingTree looked at the spread between rents and purchases of homes in the top 50 markets by population.

The results were not surprising. New York City has lost tens of thousands of residents due to the pandemic and high rent costs. The difference between a month of rent (median monthly gross rent) and home with a mortgage was $1,363. The cost to rent was $1,439. Owning a home with a mortgage was $2,802.

Next on the list was another extremely expensive city. The difference between rent and home with a mortgage in San Francisco was $1,183. The cost of a home was even more expensive than New York at $3,088 a month. In San Jose, just miles from San Francisco and home to Silicon Valley, the difference between rent and own with a mortgage was $1,098. Once again, homeownership costs were very high at $3,347. San Jose often shows up on the list of the metro with the most expensive homes in the country.

Click here to see which county has the most expensive homes in America.

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