Many financial experts say owning rather than renting a home is a good way to build wealth.
If you’re in that camp, there’s some good news: Personal finance website LendingTree found that in many desirable U.S. cities — including Miami, Dallas, Denver and Las Vegas — the area’s median monthly mortgage payment is less than the median monthly rent.
Overall, the analysis found that 20 out of the 50 metro areas looked at had lower median monthly mortgage payments than rent. Four of the top 10 are in Florida, where low wages and too few rental units are major factors in Florida’s “rent affordability crisis,” according to LendingTree.
It’s important to note that LendingTree’s analysis did not take into account down payments, saving for which can be one of the biggest obstacles aspiring homeowners face. As CNBC reported based on a 2018 analysis by HotPads, “for the average renter buying the median-priced home in America, it will take about 6½ years to save for a 20 percent mortgage down payment.”
But if you’re planning or looking to buy, here are the US metro areas that boast cheaper median monthly mortgage payments than median monthly rent payments, according to LendingTree:
10. Charlotte, North Carolina
Median rent: $1,121
Median mortgage: $1,037
Difference between rent and mortgage: $84
9. Riverside, California
Median rent: $1,369
Median mortgage: $1,280
Difference between rent and mortgage: $89
8. Jacksonville, Florida
Median rent: $1,140
Median mortgage: $1,048
Difference between rent and mortgage: $91
7. Washington, D.C.
Median rent: $1,819
Median mortgage: $1,727
Difference between rent and mortgage: $92
6. Las Vegas, Nevada
Median rent: $1,198
Median mortgage: $1,102
Difference between rent and mortgage: $96
5. Denver, Colorado
Median rent: $1,362
Median mortgage: $1,252
Difference between rent and mortgage: $110
4. Tampa, Florida
Median rent: $1,192
Median mortgage: $1,072
Difference between rent and mortgage: $120
3. Virginia Beach, Virginia
Median rent: $1,318
Median mortgage: $1,163
Difference between rent and mortgage: $155
2. Orlando, Florida
Median rent: $1,263
Median mortgage: $1,036
Difference between rent and mortgage: $227
1. Miami, Florida
Median rent: $1,477
Median mortgage: $1,215
Difference between rent and mortgage: $262
Other cool cities that have a lower monthly median mortgage payment include Houston, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Atlanta, San Antonio, Austin, Memphis and Dallas.
LendingTree used U.S. Census Bureau data to determine the median cost to own and rent in the nation’s 50 largest metro statistical areas.
BY Sarah Berger