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Buy To Let

Homeownership cheaper than renting in 90% of towns

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Monthly interest-only mortgage payments are lower than the cost of renting the equivalent property in 44 of the 50 largest towns and cities across Britain, according to research.

Average rents for all two bedroom flats available outside London currently stand at £659 per month while the average asking price for all two bedroom flats currently for sale outside London is £139,451.

A homeowner servicing an interest-only mortgage at a conservative 5% per annum would cost £581 per month, making renting 13% more expensive and leaving buyers nearly £1,000 per year better off.

Places where buying beats renting by the biggest margin include York, Milton Keynes and Derby. At the other end of the spectrum and bucking the overall trend, renting remains the cheaper option in Bournemouth, Swansea and Oldham.

In London, average rents run 17% higher on average than servicing a mortgage. With current asking prices for two bedroom flats in the capital at £483,069 and the average rent on an equivalent property at £2,362 per month, owners in London are £4,200 per year better off than renters.

Lawrence Hall of Zoopla.co.uk, said: “While buying is clearly the better option than renting at the moment based on our research, the difficulty in saving for a deposit and the tight lending conditions are preventing huge swathes of would-be buyers from taking advantage of the current lower cost of owning a home. And with more potential buyers being forced into the rental market, rents are rising based on the higher demand.”