Houston ranked one of the top cities in the nation to buy vs. rent

by John Yellig

Houston is among 18 of the 50 largest U.S. cities where it’s better to buy a home than rent one, according to a new analysis

Houston’s price-to-rent ratio puts it at No. 15 among the 50 most-populous cities in the study from real estate data firm Clever. The ratio compares the cost of buying a home to the cost of renting; a ratio of 15 or lower means it’s better to buy, while 21 or higher means it’s better to rent. Ratios in between 15 and 21 indicate the buy/rent decision may depend on individual circumstances, Clever said. 

Houston has a ratio of 15, alongside Cincinnati; Birmingham, Alabama; Philadelphia; Indianapolis; Atlanta; New York; and Louisville, Kentucky. 

In Houston, the average monthly rent payment is $1,640, while the average monthly mortgage payment — with a 6.8% mortgage rate —  is $1,952. Houston’s average home value is $298,164, compared to the national average of $417,936.  

Looking back, Houston’s typical home price has soared since 2016. In 2016, the typical monthly rent in Houston was $1,304, while the typical home value was $184,858. 

The top four cities for buying, with ratios of 12, are Pittsburgh, New Orleans, Chicago and Cleveland, while the top three cities for renting, with ratios of 26, 30 and 38, respectively, are San Jose, California; San Francisco; and Seattle. 

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