Every season, Trulia looks at the cost to rent vs. the cost to buy in 100 metro areas across the country. Usually there are some areas where renting wins and some where buying wins.
But this time — for the summer of 2012 — buying is less expensive than renting in every metro area. In some places the difference is huge, in others it’s small, but for once it’s better to buy than rent everywhere.
First off, asking home prices have started to rebound and have risen by 2.3% year over year in August (3.8% excluding foreclosures); however, rents have risen more (4.7%). This means that prices are lower relative to rents than they were a year ago.
But more importantly, mortgage rates have fallen: the best rates this summer have been around 3.5%, while last summer rates were closer to 4.5%.