Online House Hunter: Buying v Renting
THE internet has been buzzing with the revelation that it’s now cheaper to buy a house than to rent one.
The news comes from the Halifax (and Bank of Scotland) whose survey shows everywhere bar Wales and Northern Ireland has seen a shift in the traditional pattern of renting being the cheaper option.
The Halifax Buying-v-Renting review tracks the cost of buying or renting a three-bedroom house and says renters are now paying, on average, £100 more than a month than mortgage holders. That equates to an average cost for home-buyers of £608 a month – for renters, £706 a month.
So should all tenants rush out and buy a house? If only it were that simple. First, the often-predicted rise in interest rates will narrow the gap. Then there is the difficulty of finding a deposit – and obtaining a mortgage is deterring many from becoming home owners.
The Halifax also point out the flip-side of the coin: mortgage holders could benefit by switching to renting.
“Selling up your property and renting instead would provide an average equity of approximately £55,000. Investing this in a fixed rate bond would generate a monthly income of £114 to use to offset rental costs” says the Halifax spokesman.
For those looking to rent rather than buy there are a number of resources on the web. The Association of Residential Letting Agents for example gives good information to both landlords and tenants.
The rental market in London and parts of the south-east continues to heat up so I was delighted to see one person taking advantage of Twitter to tweet the following message to estate agents: “Flat hunting in London is seriously hard, and time consuming. Any1 got a good 2 bed flat in chiswick on the Market to rent?”. An innovative way to cut out the hassle! Hope he found somewhere.
- Our online property search engine – including rentals
- The Association of Residential Letting Agents
- National Landlords Association
- DirectGov: Private renting
- Citizens Advice Bureau: Overview on renting a home
- Independent Property Section
Recent Posts on Property
Latest from Independent journalists on Twitter