Surveys Say….People See Renting as Cheaper Than Buying

Recent surveys from Freddie Mac and NMHC had a few interesting findings. Probably of most import, Freddie Mac’s survey showed that an increasing percentage of renters perceive renting as less expensive than buying. From a Wall Street Journal article about the surveys:

A boom in apartment construction in the past few years has caused rent increases to begin to level off in many U.S. cities, while home price gains have accelerated over the past year. As a result, roughly 76% of renters in August said they believe renting is more affordable than owning, up from 65% in September 2016, according to survey results from Freddie Mac expected to be released Wednesday.

“We talk virtually every day about how renting is becoming less and less affordable. I think the answer is just that housing is becoming less and less affordable and renting is the more affordable of the two,” said David Brickman, executive vice president and head of Freddie Mac Multifamily.



Source: Wall Street Journal

One interesting insight from the NMHC survey is that more baby boomers than millennials cite costs of homeownership as a reason to rent:

The National Multifamily Housing Council survey found that baby boomers might be more likely than millennials to rent to avoid the costs of homeownership, perhaps because they have spent decades repairing broken dishwashers and replacing leaking roofs…

The survey found that just 7% of all renters 25 to 34 years old said they choose not to own a home because of the maintenance costs, while 28% of those over 65 years old cited that as the reason.

And this nugget of info might best explain why renting is preferred by an increasing number of folks:

The top reason renters across all age groups said they prefer to rent was convenience and flexibility, with 23% of respondents citing that as the reason…

18% cited lack of money saved for a downpayment as their reason for renting.

It’s definitely worth your time reading the full article; lots of insights into the factors underlying the continued strong rental housing market.