Study: Houston among top buyers’ markets in the U.S.

by James McClister


Almost nowhere in the country does buying beat renting more than in Houston, a new report confirmed.

In a new analysis, listing portal Trulia based its buying vs. renting determination on an array of factors, including median home prices and rents, total monthly costs (including mortgage payments, maintenance, insurance and taxes), one-time costs (including a down payment, sale proceeds, and security deposits) and future costs (which take into account rent appreciation and inflation).

It found that in Houston, buying a home with a 3.7 percent mortgage rate and a 20 percent down payment was 52.9 percent cheaper than renting, which, as our chart below shows, was the third best in the nation:

City Median Home Price Median Rent Buy vs. Rent
Miami $259,527 $2,000 -53.2%
West Palm Beach $241,509 $1,950 -53.2%
Houston $176,513 $1,575 -52.9%
Fort Lauderdale $217,342 $1,800 -52.9%
Charleston $218,090 $1,575 -52.5%
Baton Rouge $158,405 $1,350 -51.7%
New Orleans $171,302 $1,450 -51.2%
Syracuse $122,040 $1,400 -51.0%
Philadelphia $141,176 $1,300 -50.8%
Columbia, SC $124,733 $1,125 -50.6%

To put that figure into perspective, the median home price in Houston, according to Trulia, is currently $176,513; for buying to be less cost effective than paying the city’s median monthly rent of $1,575, home prices would need to jump by 130 percent to $405,980, or mortgage rates would need to increase 288 percent to 14.2 percent.

In Houston’s current market, where home price appreciation has slowed over the last year and rents have risen, it’s unlikely that either of those scenarios will become a reality any time soon.

Read More Related to This Post

Join the conversation

Oops! We could not locate your form.