Financial Implications of Renting vs Owning a Home

 This is a discussion many people talk about, but few actually go in and build a comprehensive financial model for. With this template, you can really get a good grip on what the financial impact will be over the course of your life if you own your home vs. renting a home. Obviously there are other factors to consider that may not have anything to do with numbers, but for this analysis, we are strictly looking at the numbers only.

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buy or rent

On this analysis, I went deep into the scenarios and did include the ability to invest any difference in cash flows over time based on a defined annual rate of return as well as re-investing or not.

Template Inputs

  • Buy/Own Scenario
    • Home Purchase Price
    • Down Payment
    • Loan Terms (interest rate, amortization period, term (if different than amortization length)
    • Expected average annual appreciation rate
    • Ongoing home costs (property taxes, HOA, repairs, insurance, utilities)
    • Annual growth rates of the above ongoing costs to own a home (all except repairs, which will be a fixed amount)
  • Rent Scenario
    • Starting Monthly Rent
    • Annual rent growth
    • Utilities
    • Utility annual cost growth
Template Outputs
  • Simple Scenario (no investment of cash flow differences)
    • Total Cost of Buying over lifetime of mortgage
    • Total Cost of Renting over lifetime of mortgage
    • Present value of costs: buying vs. renting over lifetime of mortgage
  • Complex Scenario (investing and cash flow surpluses)
    • Total Cost of buying/renting and re-investing over time
    • Present value cost of buying/renting and re-investing over time
  • Visualizations of each scenario
Note, the biggest proponent of renting is to say how much more you can make from investing the cash flow difference (mainly the down payment) into an investment that earns some rate of return over time as well as investing monthly cash flows if renting is cheaper. The thing to note is that it is possible the monthly cash flows for owning a home might be cheaper than renting, all depending on the input assumptions, growth rates, and initial amounts entered for all relevant costs. So, I also had to build logic to show if a monthly period as cheaper in the owning a home decision, then those extra cash flows would be invested.

This is the most comprehensive financial analysis you can do when determining own vs. rent. Enjoy!