Should you buy or rent a home? In South Florida, that decision is a no-brainer - for those who plan to stay and have the means, new report shows.
Buying is cheaper than renting in each of the 100 largest metros
Buying a home in Miami, Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach will be the easiest on your wallet: after seven years of homeownership, buying a home is 53.2% cheaper than renting according to real estate website Trulia.com.
It's cheaper to buy in every major metro because home price increases have leveled out over the past year while rental rates for apartments and single-family homes continue to soar, Trulia said. More young professionals are postponing homeownership, while other potential buyers struggle to qualify for mortgages.
Although the figures clearly favor buying, Ralph McLaughlin, housing economist for Trulia, said renting is the smarter choice for many South Floridians, including those who lack sufficient savings or who want to move easily for jobs elsewhere. If you don't plan to stay in the home for seven years, it's better to rent versus buy, even though rents are really high compared to prices.
Home price gains have slowed across South Florida after double-digit increases in 2012 and 2013
Meanwhile, rents here are rising faster than they are nationally. Thousands of rentals are being built across South Florida, but the new supply still doesn't match the rate at which South Florida developers built apartments in the last rental boom a decade ago.