December 14, 2007

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

How much do you pay a month for housing?

Do you rent or "own"?

What does that get you, and where?

(Add any other interesting tidbits too - especially Renters - how much a month would you spend if you "bought" your place today? Owners - when did you buy? What would it sell for today? What would it rent out at today?)


bubble_believer said...

I pay 1600 a month for a 2BR/2Bath condo in foster city (bay area). It would sell for 525K..which would make my mortgage 3k if i buy. and btw the HOA is 400$ which i dont pay..and btw the rent includes garbage and cable..i am happy to be renting for atleast 1-2 more years before i think of buying..

borkafatty said...


defib said...

$850 a month on mortgage, $250 of which goes into escrow for taxes etc. this buys a 1950's-era 1.5 story Cape Cod with extension plus two acres of land just outside Pittsburgh, Pa. We're moving to a bigger home in a year, however, having outgrown this one (lived here 15 years).

Anonymous said...

$1500/month for 2 Bed/1 Bath in Redondo Beach, CA. 6 blocks from beach.

Anonymous said...

I'm renting a two bedroom, completely remodeled single family house on .5 acres in a lovely development in NEPA, for 895 a month. It's a lease to own, with my landlord kicking back 5K at the end of one year if we decide to buy, so that makes my payment this year 478 a month if we go that route. But I must say, I'm enjoying the HELL out of renting. Leak? Call the landlord. Fridge broken? Ditto. Property taxes? Not my problem.

It would cost me 'less' to own for a 30 year fixed mortgage, but when the taxes and insurance are factored in it's around $50 less for me to own...and then when something breaks, I'm in the hole. Seems pointless, unless I decide to use my house as an ATM like the rest of the country.

Just sold our 2500 square foot 1890's Victorian (read...lots of work and no money left) two months ago...paid off all our debt...and our heating bill was $800 less than the same month last year in the new place. Yes, that's not a typo...$800 LESS.

I was a homeowner since my early 20's in 1994, with two paid mortgages under my belt...but little else to show for it other than many grey hairs. Market here is still pretty good, but it never skyrocketed like other places so people from LI and SI have been coming here in droves and shooting things up a little.

Time will tell whether or not we buy again. Our rent is a little less than most of similar sq, but is on less of a lot. Range runs from a one bedroom apartment in town at $600 to a four bedroom house on the lake at $3500.

Anonymous said...

$1300 month 4BR 2BA with heat-hot water- cooking gas included.

Comparable cost of owning in same neighborhood at today's prices:
$4000 - $5000 month just for P.I.T.I.

PONCH said...

I live in a decent 900 sq. ft. one bedroom with my girlfriend in West Los Angeles. $1250 a month. Just down the street, three months ago, they were asking $1.3 mil for some small-ass (but very nice) house. That shit has not sold (I'd be shocked if they were still asking a mil, and now there is also a big for rent sign, in addition to for sale). Suckers. Anyway. I work on the crew of the TV show CSI Vegas. I also have a small business, and beacuse I am a maniac saver, I have put $200 g's into the bank in the last two years. Right now I'm short the market in a pretty big way. I'm 35, and I have really only worked full time for 2 years of my life. Because I choose to live way below my means, I suspect that in two years, I'll be able to buy a house outright in LA (not that I will). Whereas all the idiot spenders out here will contine to be slaves, probably for the entirity of their lives. I don't feel one God damn bit sorry for any of these people in this horrible, greedy, stupid, non-saving, non-thinking country of ours. Americans need the biggest bitch slap, and I can't say that I am unhappy that it is coming. The fact that I am short the market frees me of the dread that many are probably even feeling now (it's still pretty early in the depression, ya know?). I feel very comfortable separating myself from "normal" Americans right now, because I do not deserve their fate. I have been very smart and careful. The writer's strike has been cool, because I have had a front row seat at watching the beginning of a very historic point in the history of the U.S. Make no mistake: I love this country. But we have let it turn into something terrible. We need a massive cleanse...from the top all the way down to the bottom...the powerful are corrupt and the people have become pathetic soft and beyond lame. I am not saying it is salvageable...I really have no idea. But what is coming could be a start. Regardless, bring it on. As Tyler Durden said: Evolve. And let the chips fall where they may.

rza said...

We rent a nice 2 year old 4 bedroom McMansion for $1800 a month in a nice area of Tampa with all of the landscaping taken care of. Saving probably $1200/mo in PITI not including maintenance all that other crap.

Debbie B said...

1400 euro per month on a home we bought in 2005. Love this place. Suzanne said we could do this. *head shake*

Anonymous said...

I pay $1250 for a 2BR, huge living room, dining room, and kitchen, 1500 square feet apartment in a 2 floor house in Jersey. 20 minutes commute to work via light rail (no driving), walking distance to malls, and 30 minutes from NYC. This home is problably worth well over 650k. You do the math.

Anonymous said...

Rent 1850/month Metro DC/NoVA 1980's style TH 2 bed, 2 bath, 2 powder rooms 1500 sq feet above grade, 500 sq ft finished basement.

4-6 units for sale in the plan all still trolling for a GF willing to pay 05 bubble peak prices of ~425k.

PITI at 6% fixed 30 years w/ 20% down comes out to ~2500. Tack on 100USD for the HOA plus a few hundred more for repairs (owner just sunk 15k in it to replace all the poly-but pipes with copper, new furnace etc.) So your looking at something in ~2800 range. Take out tax breaks and its close but its still a rent signal in my book. I'd rather buy new for that price and not have all the repair/replace costs that exist with a 25+ year old property.

TechGradStudent said...

I live in beautiful Pasadena near South Lake Avenue and Caltech. I live in a small 2 bedroom apartment and I pay $1350 per month in rent. I do have to pay for my own electricity, but no charge for water, trash, gardener. No natural gas in this building.

The apartment is an older, small building with just 4 units, and my landlord comes by and visits maybe once every other month to do repairs and check up on us. Cool guy. I can walk to Trader Joe's, the brand new world's largest Whole Foods Market, and I can walk to campus.

Ed said...

$1700 rent

4/3 2600 sq ft home in suburban Atlanta. Over an acre of land, pool, new kitchen, hardwood floors in the whole house, french doors, sun room, amazing home.

This area is an old, established community with homes 40-50 years old. No HELOC, ARMs or other funny bizness around here far as I can tell. We live a mile from a major hospital. And next to the hospital about 20 medical buildings. Many of my neighbors are doctors or retired doctors who have lived here for decades.

Hard to say what this would sell for. There are 2 homes listed for $1.1M and $1.2M two blocks away. Last sale was in June and the price was $675K. That was pretty close to what my rental is, the two for sale are a lot bigger with probably 2+ acres of land.

Either way I am paying a lot less in rent than what I would pay to own.

frede said...

$1000 going up to $1050, but on the market for $1180, for a 1200sf 3BR apt 20 mi south of seattle. We're moving to rent a 2600sf house for $1650.

If we bought a house in the same area it would likely be more modest than the one we are about to move into, and the mortgage would probably be close to $2000/mo.

Chris said...

$612 a month (PITI) to "own" a 900 sq foot 1 bedroom, 1 bath condo conversion in middle class suburbs of Detroit Michigan.

I also have a 1 car detached garage.

... Would cost me $700 a month to rent without the garage.

...Sounds good, but If I would have bought now instead of 12-2005 it would be about $500 a month :(

george said...

$459 for a studio and that include heat, extra storage space and a garage for my car in minneapolis.

I get a rent discount since I shovel the snow as needed and might get to cut the grass so it's far less than 10% of my income.

Anonymous said...

$1950/ Month Rent Includes
Lawncare/Leaf pickup

3 Br 2 Ba W/ Den - I share with GF.

Location: 7 minutes to Bethesda office (15 with traffic), close-in very nice/safe/white neighborhood in Montgomery County, MD (outside DC), backs to biggest CITY park in America (Rock Creek Park); This house was built in 1957 but is fully modernized (cathedral ceilings, skylights, sunken living room, new windows, stainless steel appliances, 2 decks, open floorplan).

House would have sold for mid-600K at peak. Not sure now. Likely about 100K less. Sold for 190K in 1998.

Not counting interest deduction or maintainence, but counting taxes and insurance, this would cost over $3500 per month if I had bought it.

Anonymous said...

My rent is $600/mo; These 2BR/1.5BA condos go for about 85k (Ocala, Fl)

Anonymous said...

Rent. $917/month 1br/1bath apartment in Los Angeles. No utilities included, but parking is secure, separate lot and free. This is on the very low end of the rental market for a 1/1 here.

Percentage of Gross Income 14.7% to 17.6%.

Anonymous said...

$1100, 1bed 1 bath apt. all utilities included. Upscale area. Wife and I live less than 3 miles from work. Can walk to just about anything I need.

Buying would cost us at least 3-4 times that; that is just buying, not incl. taxes, insurance, utilities and maintenance.

Recently married so it great for now. Nothing to worry about as the landlord fixes everything at their expense. Well buy in the future, but now is obviously not the right time.

Anonymous said...

I pay 1600 a month for a 2BR/2Bath condo in foster city (bay area).


Good god that is insane.

Mark in San Diego said...

$2500 a month for a 16th floor fantastic view of San Diego Bay 2/2. . .pool/weight room, walk to everything. . .cost to own? 700K. . .I have the 700K (from previous home sale) out at 6.1% in my portfolio of bonds, MLP's, etc. so get $42,700 a year vs. paying 30K a year in rent. . .No HOA's ($500 a month here) no taxes - $8000 a year in San Diego. . .

Conversekidz said...

$1000 per month for a 2 bed 1 bath in san jose. Its about 4 blocks away from Saratoga, prime location to all the major freeways.

It might not be as big as my friends house, but at least I don't pay 5k a month on a mortgage payment.

My girlfriend and I have no intentions on buying in california for a very very long time if ever, thinking of leaving state.

Anonymous said...

Newport Beach Ca.
3bd, 2ba
3400.00 per month Rent
to buy $1,300,000

The strange thing is the median income in the hood is $147K. The houses can cost 1m-to 4M.

Metroplexual said...

$1,600 For an 1800 sq. ft. 3 Bed 2.5 bath townhouse in NW New Jersey. Taxes + HOA on the place are nearly $9,000 a year. We have security, swimming pools and tennis courts and snow removal along with garbage removal, and landscaping.

Sale prices for these units are north of $270,000. I will not be buying anytime soon. Waiting for the last of the big loan resets in 2010.

Anonymous said...

Own in NE Ohio. Great schools.
~3200 sq ft. 4yrs old. new devel.
$1200/mth RE tax and ins included.

You get a lot for your money here, but 4 months of crap weather.

Anonymous said...

I live in a beachfront hacienda in Malibu valued at $3.5 million. My mortgage is $35,000 a month. I also have a beautiful wife and mistress, a Rolls Royce in the garage and I take a trip to Europe every couple of months or so. LIFE coudn't be better.
Hey are my lies better than everyone's else's on this blog?

Anonymous said...

Renting one bedroom $1200 a month in San Francisco (rent controlled and I am not leaving)

To buy would be $500-600k

Anonymous said...

$515/month RENT for 1BR/1BA apartment in Ohio. Includes garage parking, heat, water. Solid 1940's concrete slab construction means no neighbor noise. Landlord owns building free and clear and does credit and backgrounds checks on all tenants. No kids, dogs, illegals, or section 8 trash.

Comparable condo would be $50-75K to buy, plus condo fee of $200-500/month.

Finally Sold the House said...

$775 rent for a 3BR,1BA 1959 ranch house outside of Raleigh, NC.

Sadly, I had to pay a $1,300 mortgage on my empty Ohio house for 4 months as well. Finally sold it!

After commissions, I got back about what I paid for the house in summer 2001.

Anonymous said...

3BR/3.5Bath TH w/ garage and deck (little to no yard) in Alexandria VA- 2550/month rent.

They say they are "selling" for between 450 and 600K, but none have moved in the past 6 months.

Everything in this area is absurd.

Anonymous said...

Ponch - How long have you been short the market? S&P 500 is up 4.3% year-to-date, 3.8% over the last year, 16.3% the last 3 years and 66.4% the last 5 years, all excluding dividends. What dread have those that are long been feeling? Congrats if you perfectly time the top and bottom over the last six months, but I doubt you are that good. I do applaud you for living below your means. said...

Rent for $3,500/month.

If we'd "bought" at the time we signed the lease, it would have cost about $8,000/month on a 30-year fixed.

At today's price it would cost around $6,000 to "own". When the cost to buy on a real mortgage is in line with the cost to rent, I'll buy it. Until then, there's one born every minute.

Dan said...

PITI of $3400 for a 4/3 2700sq.ft. home in Bel Air, CA on a 8000sq.ft. lot.

Bought for $750K in summer 2001. Would sell today for maybe $1.5M.
Would rent for $5K or so.

Anonymous said...


The boss rents it.

2 bed/2 bath apartment in Los Angeles.

drew said...

$1050 rent for a dumpy studio (studio!!!) in Alexandria, VA, just South of the Beltway. Similar places sell for $275k around it, although those prices are collapsing.

Rent or own, DC is just obscene if you want to live anywhere near the trains. And trashy, too. Run-down townhouses for $500k. It's like a boring version of Britain for the morbidly obese.

tucker said...

Own 1500 sf on 5 acres, 5 miles to shopping. 15 year fixed, owe 80k. had it since 92', worth 420k and going down quickly in Bend OR. PITI is $920.

Anonymous said...

1. $436 P & I $300 for taxes/insurance

2. Renting from bank till mortgage is paid off

3. 736 a month? not much in Modesto, CA

4. To buy today? Forget it way out of my price range

5. Purchased in 1987

Anonymous said...

Wow, I dunno where you South Bay, SoCal guys are getting these rent deals but it's great to hear.

I'm currently in a $2700 2bdr 950sq foot condo on the strand in hermosa. It's listed for ~$1mill on the market, and recently i saw it on Yahoo RealEstate as public notice of default ! So I put in my notice and am moving out.

Going to Redondo living in a $1.3mill 3bdr house completely redone inside and out - 1.5 miles from the beach $2500/ month not including utilities.

Anonymous said...

$800 for a nice little 3/2. I have $250k in cash. The interest pays my rent.

Why should I buy a house? What the hell for?

Rordogma said...

Austin TX
2-bedroom, 1-bath
nice condition, great location

Houses in this neighborhood(south congress 78704) fall into two categories...

1. Total tear-down, tiny, shithole falling apart shack-like houses for $200k - 300k. These houses are not fit to live in.

2. Mini-McMansions built by flippers ontop of the recently tore-down shacks, with questionable building standards/materials...350-500k.

I think renting wins.

Lady Di said...

I pay $3,000 a month in mortgage, insurance, HOA and property taxes for a 4 bedroom, 2000 square foot home in Orange County, CA.

It would cost about the same to rent a house for this size/location.

We bought/financed the house in 2001 for $350,000 with a 15 year fixed loan. We could probably dump it in today's market for $600,000, but only an idiot would buy it for that amount.

I expect the home to drop to under $450,000.

Anonymous said...

Rent costs are $600 month for a one-bedroom 1 bath SMALL house (700 sq. feet). But, hey I like it. I'll probably buy within a couple years , when housing finally hits the bottom.

Hecate said...

Buying bigger house/lot since 2004 in the Pacific NW. Requires a certain fortitude to endure the dark grays and rain forest weather in the winter---it's not for everyone. Many Californians and mid-westerners come for the beauty, the room, the clear water, and leave after the first winter. I'm native.

15/yr fixed Mortgage @5.125 payment $1393 per month. 4 b/3b, half acre in prime location, university town.

Passive solar, amazing views, privacy, organic kitchen garden (dozens of garlic cloves planted last month), herb gardens, nut trees, room for the dog and three cats at hammerhead deadend bordered by forested open space.

To rent here, about the same.

The gain in owning: privacy and autonomy.

LadyLessee said...

Ft. Lauderdale, gotta love it when I live not more than one mile from ocean & cute & fab Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, not 10 minutes to Las Olas, 30 minutes to South Beach, in 2 bdrm. very well maintained & updated condo which includes full cable, cabana's, pool, pool room, party room, loads of parking and in upscale neighborhood....$900 month for last 3 years. Let others call me a loser, I'm laughing all the way to the bank, I'm sure having fun, don't owe a penny, have owned in my life when it was right and will again, but not now. Nope, this sassy lady isn't stupid, this sassy lady is LadyLessee.

Anonymous said...

I own a house and a duplex in Des Moines, Iowa.

I bought the house in January 2004 for $100,000 (2 bed, 1 bath, 1000 sqft) and I currently rent it for $1070 (which is above market, it's probably only woth $900 a monh as a rental, IMO). I've put about $20,000 into it in improvements, my PITI on it comes to $795 a month so I'm currently making $275 a month off of it.

I bought the duplex(2 bed, 1 bath, 900 sqft on both sides) in August of 2007 for $134,000 and I live on one side of it. I rent the other side out for $675 and my PITI is $1144. My side is slightly nicer then the side I rent so I could get $700-$750 is I rented my side out as well.

Right now, between the two places, I'm taking in $1745 in rents and paying out about $1940 in PITI. I'm paying about $200 out of pocket to live in the duplex and would be profiting about $500 a month if I rented it out along with the other two units.

I plan on buying another house to live in soon so I can rent the entire duplex out, the $500 I'll be making on the two places I have will pay fo half the new mortgage. There's a decent sized inventory here in the farther out suburbs so it will be interesting to see how that effects rents. At $1070 a month I think I'm getting more than the market will support for my house.

Malcolm said...


3 Bed, 2 Bath, 1450 Sq Ft

About $450/month taxes


3 skylights, 1 fireplace, 1 sauna, 2 full bath; and the peace of mind that comes from having no debt.

MO Homeschool Dad said...

$1,247 per month, principle + interest + tax + insurance. (Suburb of St. Louis, MO)

$92,000 on a $120,000, 15 year, 5 3/8 pct loan. About 10 years left.

I make $5,500 a month after taxes, not including my wife's income. This makes it 22.7% of my take home pay (pre 401K deductions). Dave Ramsey recommends no more than 25%.

I've heard it said that you shouldn't buy your house for more than 2.5-3.0x your annual income. That would put me at about $225-270K for a house. Ours is valued at about $135-140. We bought it when we were at about 2.5-3.0x. We had thought about trading up, but we're now going to wait until a super-great deal presents itself, or when we get this one paid off (about the same time the kids are out of college).

It's a modest house for our income, but I feel much better about our personal future staying where we are after reading this blog for the last few months!

Anonymous said...

I pay $850 a month for a large 1bdrm in a good area in the bubbliest city of the World. Similar condo in the same area would cost around $300k to $350k.
The rent is about 8% of my pre-tax income. Pretty good deal.

Cornholio Mangus said...

$850 per month for a 2br 1.5ba apartment in Scottsdale, AZ 85258

I walk less than 300 yards to work.

Comparable condominiums go for $240,000. With property tax, HOA (this is McCormick Ranch), etc, "owning" might run around $2000/month.

Anonymous said...

Rent in a gated community in NoVa for 2K Monthly. Made the floplord pay the 150.00 Monthly HOA fee.

3000 sq ft 4 bd (circa 2003) in a gated golf community.

Have no clue what it would sell for
Hell, it sat on the Market for a year & DIDN'T sell. REO down the street (same floorplan) not selling at 550K. It's lookn' trashier by the day. Thankful to GOD I don't own here

Sold my house in NoVa last year & sitting on a wad....bought pre-bubble (2001) :)

Renting in Google Country. said...

$1211 per month split between me and my GF for a 1 bedroom rental apartment in the 94041( Google Country.) It's hard to say what it would cost to own a 1 bedroom condo in this city. It would cost north of $500,000 for sure but how far north I don't know. My housing costs amount to under 10% of my gross income.

Anonymous said...

$850.00 Month, Rent

I was complaining about the recent raise from $785.00 after 4+ years.

Live in L.A., 10 minutes from beaches, mountains, hollowwood, disneyland, etc, so on.

2 Bedroom house behind Landlords house. No foot traffic, large yard (the landlord put a fence right outside his back door, giving me a football field for myself), no stress.

Will be buying once housing gets back to reality.

MassBubbleGirl said...

I pay 1400 a month for 2BR/1B apartment near Boston, MA. I have all the amenities of a home. If I were to buy a house in my neighborhood, I would easily being paying $2500 or more a month on mortgage alone and then add the other expenses. It makes no sense for me to buy right now unless I move to an area farther away from the city and even then the prices are inflated but I have noticed lower prices for homes than even a year ago. Some sellers have gotten the memo and others are completely in denial with properties on the market for well over a year.

gbarney04 said...

Own - $2,230 (tax and insurance included), 4 bedroom home on .22 acres in Greenwich, CT, 1 mile from beach

happy homeowner in the stix said...

$1006/month, PITI, one mile from the Atlantic in Florida. 1900 sq ft on .36 acre. Built in '81, not one of those godawful cookie cutter monstrosities. Nice, quiet family development, lots of little kids, some older people (hey, it's Florida, what do you expect???), close to everything. Bought it in July 2006. Might have gotten it for a bit cheaper now, if it would have been on sale, but not that much more. Insurance went down slightly so I'm paying $15 less a month this year compared to last year.

Renting a 1300+/- sq ft apartment a year ago was $1350. Currently that same apartment rents for about $1450. That included a daily hike up the stairs (my 13 year old dog just loved that, let me tell you), air conditioning that occasionally worked properly, no garage, tiny kitchen and "interesting" neighbors downstairs who liked to have domestic disputes after Friday night cocktails.

Oh, and my power bill cost more for the apartment, too. My house has energy efficient windows, and the apartment had single pane ones.

Anonymous said...

Own - $2,230 (tax and insurance included), 4 bedroom home on .22 acres in Greenwich, CT, 1 mile from beach

rom said...

$865/mo renting a small 400 s/f studio in West Hollywood, CA with secure underground parking!!! Similiar place sold across the street for $300K last year. On my street there are new $1 million condos that seem to be empty. Around the corner the new $750K condos have rent signs. About a year ago I looked into buying a new development in a cheaper area (Koreatown) -- that unit was 800 s/f for $435,000 with one parking space and $600/month association fees. I wanted an extra parking space and that was going to run $25K. I stuck with rent control.

Andrew said...

i rent for €2200 per month in one of the best neighborhoods in Dublin. that gets me a 3 bedroom semi-detached which is big enough for our family of four. i don't know how long i will be here, so i feel better renting.

the house was supposedly worth €1.2m when i signed the lease. at current rates, i could put €500k down and buy at €1.2m, which would be €4100 per month in payments.

i pay for gas and electricity. no upkeep, lawn mowing, or repairs. if they raise the rent, i'll move somewhere else. in these uncertain times, it pays to be mobile.

however, there was a nicer house down the street for sale for €1.5m. no offers. now it is for rent for €3500 a month...4 months vacant and counting.....

Suebee said...

Love the blog...keep up the good work.

We own.
$1500 a month for 4BR/3Bath, 2200 sq ft home two blocks from 100acre greenbelt. House is on on almost 1/3 acre. Includes taxes and insurance. No HOA.

This is north Texas though, and a dollar goes a lot further on housing.

tedthecanuck said...

Own - property taxes are about 183.00/month,
electricity/sewer about 120/month, gas about 130.00/month, depending on how cold it is. Of course there are other upkeep costs as well, plus phone and cable, but straight house related stuff is then about 433.00/month. Oh yeah, house insurance is about 50 bucks/month.

Having a house is nice in some ways, but if anything breaks, you have to fix it or pay someone else to fix it. Also, stuff always seems to need painting or repair. Since we have two young boys, the number of things that need repair seems to have increased somewhat since the days when we were single.

Anonymous said...

Living in a 4 yr old, 1500 sq ft bungalow with finished basement (2800 sq ft total living space), paying $1,500 a month in mortgage + taxes. Bought at $275,000 in Dec. 2005. This is in Gatineau, Quebec, across the border from Ottawa. A similar house in Ottawa would be worth about $425,000, but provincial income taxes are higher in Quebec. I bought here for my family to be in a bilingual area, and because I'm betting that any income tax cuts here will directly contribute to an increase in house prices.

I've seen similar places on the market now in my neighbourhood where sellers are asking for 310-320K. Lord knows if that's what they're getting or not. Similarly sized homes/condos in the area rent for between 1200 and 1600, so the price I paid was on the high end of reasonable.

If I had to sell today...I wouldn't, plain and simple. I bought this house because I love it, and I'll love it even more when we're done the light renovations we want to make to it.

The idea was to buy a house that we would be able to live in for 20 years, and live in it for at least 10. The plan hasn't changed.

Anonymous said...

I love listening to the Dave Ramsey show lately. You can laugh at all the FB flipper-turned-landlords calling in and crying. Everyone thought they were a Junior Trump the past few years.

Anonymous said...

$2,100 Rent - Gorgeous 2 year old Townhouse in Alexandria, VA

To have a mortgage on this place would easily take our monthly pmt. to $4,000.
Noooooooo Thanks!!

Anonymous said...

I rent a nice 2/2/1 office apartment with 1150sf for $792. With no children, why would I want to pay $1600+ for a house and have to do maintenance? I'm debt free with $200K in my retirement and brokerage accounts. I drive a nice BMW, eat out, travel and enjoy life. The guys in my office who bought into the ponzi scheme bring 99 cent frozen dinners to work for lunch. They can't afford a coke. They're always whining about being broke and some of them don't even have enough money for their 401k. I'll think about buying a small house in a couple of years if the price is right. OTOH I might take a job overseas since I don't have a boat anchor mortgage tying me down

Joanne said...

I pay $7,038 a month for mortgage and $600 in HOA for a 2 bed/1 bath 900 SF condo in San Francisco. My neighbor is renting the same unit for $2,100, but he's stupid because I'm earning all the equity, he's just throwing his money away. Plus I can tell my family "I own a $1m place in the city." What can he say, "I'm a renter folks".
I'm a lawyer and 75% of my salary goes to housing, but its worth it, I love that place.

Anonymous said...

My wife and I sold 3 homes over this bubble, two of them for INSANE prices that WE WOULD NEVER PAY but some fools did, even the 1st one we sold was overpiced. Banked the money and waiting it out. Now we rent a pent house 3/2.5 direct ocean in Ft Lauderdale. 2400 square feet. They wanted $4,500 a month. I signed 5 months ago a 3 year lease for $2,400 a month (Includes Digital cable with premium channels, water and garbage), each year I have the option to extend. This rent covers the owners taxes and association fees, not his mortgage. LOL. I told them I will not pay more then $12 a square foot for rent. When everything is done collapsing we'll once again buy more property. However right now we enjoy the sunrises on the ocean from every room at a fair living cost with NO OWNERSHIP headaches. Frankly I have never enjoyed renting but when I do the math it makes no economic sense to own right now. The owner so far spent $3,000 on AC that failed and $250 for plumber...we didn't pay that. I call that nice. This place would be a million or so in this inflated market and I think based on a rental income approach it is not worth more then $250,000, even that is a stretch. So I believe property has a MUCH more to correct, not withstanding the FED completely destroying the dollar.

Anonymous said...

One thing some homeowners forget about is the lost interest on the equity you have in a house.

If you own a house free and clear, your real expenses are not just taxes and insurance.

If you're looking at a cost-to-own vs cost-to-rent analysis, you'd have to consider how much you're losing on the money that is tied up in the house. Because if you were renting, you could at the very least have that money in a CD at 5%.

So, for example, if I own a house or condo free-and-clear that I could net $400k from if I sold it, that is, at a minimum, $20,000/yr ($1666/mth) in interest that I would receive if I was renting. Likewise, even if I had a small mortgage on the property, any equity that I have is still lost interest.

Not to mention that anyone that owns a property right now will lose even more equity if they hold it longer.

Bottom line is, I don't care what your "out of pocket" expenses are, in terms of wealth preservation, renting will still be the best option for the next several years.

I love diane o said...

You guys will never guess who I saw roaming the streets in downtown sacramento today. Well imagaine our old pal casey serin.He was drifting around looking like a homeless tool.I hope god helps this troubled man.I saw him near richards blvd off the 160 near loves and fishes.Looks like he made friends with another drifter.

Donna said...

I bought in 1997 new, finished in 1998, 4/3ba, 2036sqft. 3 car gar. 80x200f lot. Paid 180k owe 68k in Corona. Mortgage 1,428 including P.I.T.I. Up for sale but could rent for positive $2,200/mo.
Will sell furnished!

Indy500 said...

I pay $1500 a month for a 5bed/3bath 3000sf home in Lousiville, CO. It would cost me around 400K to purchase.
I moved here in Nov of 06 from Indianapolis and similar houses in the area were 440 - 500K. The prices are going to continue down IMO. So, for now, I'll continue to rent, let my kids use the nice neighborhood pool, and not pay any HOA fee.
Thanks Keith!

Anonymous said...

$2,100 Large 2 bedroom 2 bath apt
in Santa Monica, CA (90403) 11 blocks to beach and the Promenade ( outdoor shopping center which attracts International tourists) Great public schools.
Comparable condos with comparable square feet are selling over 800K plus
Homes in this zip code are in the 1.5 to 3 million plus dollar range. There is no way we could have a mortgage of $2,100 and live in this zip code if we did not rent (NOW that is)...2 years from now????

California Hating said...

Rent: $1800 a month in a nice area 40 miles inland of Los Angeles. If in this type area near Los Angeles would easily cost $3600 plus per month. Home is a small 1100 square foot 3 bed and 2 bath. But have to commute 1.5 to 2 hours per day one way to L.A... Friggin Gas (not to mention the time) is killing me. YOU guys in the Rest of the country have NO IDEA how friggin bad it is in CALIFORNIA. This is going to be a crash worthy of the history books. By the way, home would cost about 3k per month to buy PITI and that's after loosing 100k in value in the last year. THINK ABOUT THAT!!

Anonymous said...

$870/mo 1 br 1 bath apartment 1 block from the beach / cliffs in san diego. We have a pool, and off-street parking. It's an aprtment, so can't really compare to buying. But, a 1 br condo in my neighborhood would probably start at $325,000 (on a good day) plus all the other associated bills. And all the "condos" around here are apartments that were "converted" - makes me sick. I spend less than 15% of my income on all housing related expenses, live in one of the nicest places in the USA, and I live well.

Anonymous said...

$1,000 a month. 1.5 acres w/ a 1977 home (also just outside of Pittsburgh). Bought four years ago and have paid off half the principal.

Anonymous said...

Pay $420/mo all inclusive to live in my friends abandoned 3 br 2 bath gated community house in bust-town north las vegas. Should be another 2 months at the minimum before the eviction notice.

Anonymous said...

Wesley Chapel (just north of Tampa)3212 5/3.5/2 waterfront 1900 mos w/piti after 20k dn on just over 280. this model sold out but we're about 18k less if they were still selling this home. Also only 2 homes left in here, dirt cheap models w/all that's in them (furniture/decor). Our homes sold way less than any neighborhood near us by an easy 40k and just over 200 total homes. So we have some buffer based on outside comps problem is investors ravaged the first phase and they'll rent to anyone,dirt cheap,this would prob rent for 1600 :( and our xmas cards will read...Season's Greetings straight from the hood.

bubbleglum said...

I live in a paid off house and 11 acres in the midwest. No debt. Budget about $5000/year to live on. Grow most of my own food. Heat with wood. Free firewood. Fish ponds, lots of wild game. Many miles from nearest small town. Mucho ammo.

Anonymous said...

$459 for a studio

I rent, but a studio would be too small. I need some space to breath.

Anonymous said...

Bought in 1999 for $86K. Mortgage and HOA dues is $800/mo. Utilities are around $140/mo.

Similar places in the neighborhood rent for around $1100/mo. The peak comparable sale was $190K, and they are currently selling around $145K. Some people have been asking $170K for months, but $145K will move 'em.

Anonymous said...

$325/mo gets me half of a 1950's duplex, two br, one bath with 925 square feet. I pay all utilities except water. Man I love this place. Downfall= no dishwasher. Remaining money goes to fun and saving, and fun.

Anonymous said...

I pay $2800 for an apartment in San Francisco with unobstructed panoramic view of both bridges & downtown view and deck. I guess I pay the most rent but this place would sell for a million today, so I am living high and still have my money invested in gold producing stocks.
I have no idea what a million mortgage, HOA and taxes would be but it would be too much for me.

Kelly said...

I rent for $700/month in Chicago. One bedroom, one bath.

I'm happy renting and have no plans to buy a home.

Anonymous said...

Very well said!

Anonymous said...

Rent...$2,500/mo; Upper East Side, New York City. 1 bedroom in doorman hi-rise, all utils included; built 1974; 835 sq. feet.

Cost to buy: $700K

NMC said...

We're renting out a 3bdrm/2bth flat for $875/month. It's around 1050 sq feet and w/g/s is paid by manager. It's more of a cookie-cutter apartment, but it's right next door to public transportation, so we save a lot on gas. Also, it's just several blocks down from most of the stores we shop at.

Anonymous said...


I am a full-time road warrior and travel site to site for the most part. I have to rent the occasional car for a weekend and pay for a room when I can't stay on my points but that beats anything else.

I've slept in my car a few times, hit Wally-world for a sleeping bag once in a while, and met a lot of great people. Every month or so I rotate through my parents place and they love to see me. I am officially a 34 year old 'loser' who lives with his parents but if you have an opportunity to do this for a while I highly recommend it.

black swan said...

Bought a 650 sq. foot penthouse, city view, gated Condo with all the amenities and up grades, Downtown Orlando, bubble ground zero.

Bought in 2005. Appraisal in 2005 $180,000.00; Paid $150,000.00 fro a FB.

Mort.$730.00 Fixed
Taxes $2000.00 year
HOA $140.00 month (includes insurance)

Other units Rent for $800.00 to $900.00 month depending on where they are in the building.

Kailuan said...

$975/mo for a 2 bdr, 1 bath cottage in beautiful Kailua, Hawaii on the island of Oahu.

I imagine the monthly mortgage on this place would be at least $3,000.

We have lived here for many years so we have a great deal, but it would probably cost someone new moving in around $2,000 to rent...still a much better deal than buying.

Arlene said...

$800 - rent, 2BR/2Bath condo in the Pacific northwest. Excellent maintenance staff -- priceless!

Buying the equivalent locally would be approximately $140,000 to $200,000 now. A decent value would be about $80,000 to $125,000, so I'll wait. Unless I'm "priced out forever" (sob!)

Anonymous said...

California Hating said...

Rent: $1800 a month in a nice area 40 miles inland of Los Angeles. If in this type area near Los Angeles would easily cost $3600 plus per month. Home is a small 1100 square foot 3 bed and 2 bath. But have to commute 1.5 to 2 hours per day one way to L.A... Friggin Gas (not to mention the time) is killing me. YOU guys in the Rest of the country have NO IDEA how friggin bad it is in CALIFORNIA. This is going to be a crash worthy of the history books. By the way, home would cost about 3k per month to buy PITI and that's after loosing 100k in value in the last year. THINK ABOUT THAT!!


Dude, why are you paying so much to live in the Inland Empire renting? You can get a home in South Bay for that much (2 bdrm). Stop the insanity. Why pay so much to deal w/ 2 hour each way traffic and live with the lowest forms of life on this planet. Inland Empire people are the lowest form of life next to cockroaches. Rancho Cucamonga and Colton included.

Lady Di said...

Oh, I forgot to mention that we also own a house in Greece, which is paid off. We pay a small amount for property taxes each year.

We plan to exit the US and live in Greece for a while if the shit really hits the fan here.

Better food; Better beaches; Normal people; Very few real estate agents and mortgage brokers polluting the country. You can't go wrong with Greece.

tregen said...

2300/month + 150 in utilities for 2 bedroom, 1 bath three blocks from beach in Laguna Beach. Approached owner about buying one month ago... he wants 1.75 million. Very funny.....I laughed. The place is a tear down for the most part... maybe someone will buy it but it is a small lot backing to ravine..... not likely.

Shakster said...

My house payment is less than most peoples HOA Dues.HA HA.They don't call me Shakster for nothin.Hey ,go ahead and lauph-It's almost paid for.No hoa ,plenty of land,and it's a "MANS" Home.No frills,drapes,or coasters.A shop loaded with toys,anna computer with hughesnet satallite.Maybe I'll work harder ,and get a maid from Brazil,and Caterpiller D-11N bull dozer for keepen the weeds down,or maybe doze this dump ,and build a Shakster paradise when the asset destruction sets in hard.

Anonymous said...

We pay $820/month for a 1300 sq ft, 3bd/2ba "almost condo", and yes, we rent. It's average for that much square footage in the area, in an exceptionally quiet neighborhood, and is pet friendly, all important to us. The closest I can come up with, in terms of good neighborhood and same square footage, is $230,000 or over $1,300 a month easy, and not counting taxes, insurance, or HOA. Granted they come with a fireplace, but they're only two bedroom. I think we'll stay here for quite a while longer. Oh, and that's in southern Oregon

Anonymous said...

$600/mo. 1bedroom carriage house apt, on an 18acre horse fram.
-Bucks County PA.

75min to Manhattan, NYC.

40min to Philly

Zero Crime, Clean Air, Norman Rockwell Setting

btw, I spend 7% of my salary on rent.

Ya'll can stick LA and Phx smog in your arses.

Anonymous said...

My PITI is $900 a month for a small (1500 sf), very energy efficient home on several acres. I own and I'm happy.

Anonymous said...

bubbleglum said...
I live in a paid off house and 11 acres in the midwest. No debt. Budget about $5000/year to live on. Grow most of my own food. Heat with wood. Free firewood. Fish ponds, lots of wild game. Many miles from nearest small town. Mucho ammo.

December 14, 2007 10:38 PM



you are my hero. i can't wait to buy in 3yrs for one reason... grow my own food. some guys at work have greenhouses too, and 12 apple trees. much ammo is good.

-renting in Bucks County, PA

tater said...

Well, I rent here in Georgia for $600 month. I like the weather. Some people look down their noses at me for renting, but i'm not paying their $2500 mortgages. That gives me peace. I've got one friend who is SO upside down on his house mortgage. Poor guy, He works his ass off, just to pay the bank. However, I think the bank does allow him to keep a small amount for 2 meals a day.

Anonymous said...

Lady Di said:
We bought/financed the house in 2001 for $350,000 with a 15 year fixed loan. We could probably dump it in today's market for $600,000, but only an idiot would buy it for that amount.
I expect the home to drop to under $450,000.
Expect it to go BELOW the historical mean of appreciation. Only an IDIOT would pay more than what YOU PAID FOR IT IN 01!

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:21 said:
Live in L.A., 10 minutes from beaches, mountains, hollowwood, disneyland, etc, so on.
Really? So I take you get around in a helicopter?

Anonymous said...

I'm a lawyer and 75% of my salary goes to housing, but its worth it, I love that place.
Has anyone noticed the similarity between the word "lawyer" and "liar"?

Anonymous said...

Own a brownstone in Brooklyn. I bought it for $12,000 in 1959. I figure it's worth about $850,000 today. Comps were selling for $1.2 million in 2006.

Anonymous said...

About $1900 rent (includes cable, broadband and trash) for a brand new 2Bed/2.5Bath 2000 sq ft townhome with garage in one of the most affluent and safest zip codes in central NJ.

Purchase price would probably be around $450K, so mortgage might be around $2K + about $1K in property taxes (this is NJ), insurance, housing association fees and maintenance. So assuming tax deductions under an AMT regime, renting and buying cost about the same but buying has greater downside risk and is more of a commitment.

Stuck in So Pa said...

Taxes + ins + utilities
about 425/mo. Own. 7200 sq ft old, super-insulated, everything updated relic on 1.3 acres. Nobody here, nothing to do, but thats the trade off of living in the sticks!

Girl Guide said...

Condo $1000/month, two bedroom, two bath, screened porch overlooking river, boat dock, access to Gulf of Mexico. Quiet. Manatees in the river.
Herons in the yard, eagles, herons, and an occasional alligator. Downstairs neighbor can't give his place away. Has dropped the price $50,000 in the past year. No lookers. SW Florida is ground zero for the economic disaster that is unfolding.

Anonymous said...

Sold at bubble's peak and now rent a 900 sq ft oceanfront condo for $900/month, including A/C, basic cable TV, beach, concierge, full gym with ocean view, concierge, valet, secured garage, pool, jacuzzi, tennis courts, and 10 minutes from office. My electric bill is $30, Skype in-out is $90/year (no hardline phones), cell bill is around $20/month, gasoline is $60/month because I live very close to work and enjoy the beach right in front of me on weekends. Landlord hasn't increased the rent for the last 3 years. Similar condo sells now for $450k. I have no debts, emergency fund that covers 3 years of living expenses, and used the proceeds from previous home sale to invest in emerging markets and precious metals. I also bought properties in a tropical island overseas, taking advantage of a stronger dollar back then. Now the dollar has tanked in that country also, which increased considerably the return on my investments there. Getting ready to spend a couple months in that paradise; leaving on the Dec. 18th. I'm drinking a Chianti on my oceanfront balcony as I type this.

Anonymous said...

you guys will never guess who I saw roaming the streets in downtown sacramento today. Well imagaine our old pal casey serin.

Did you put your head out of the window to yell: "SWEEEEEET!!!"?

Anonymous said...

Condo A - 2b/2bh luxury unit bought in 2004 - paid $140K.. put 20% down. 5-7/8 30 yr conv. mortgage. Mortage with PITI is just 800 p/mo. HOA fee is $84. This is rented out for $895 p/mo. Appraised in 2006 for $190K and it is maintaining its value (meaning that like units still sell in this range).

Condo B 1bd/1bth unit - bought in 2006 - paid $135K with 20% down 6.5% 30 year conv mortgage (I hated the broker... ). Monthly PITI is just over $800 and HOA fee is $200. This is a primary residence. Tax assessor statement for 2008 - unit value is now $168,000. The plan is to refi this at a lower rate for 15 years. If I rented it I'd get between $800 and $1000 p/mo (HOA fee for this unit includes all utilities except cable tv and phone).

I live in Portland, Oregon

Anonymous said...

They snuck in a bailout package for Wall Street. The FHA aka taxpayers, will be insuring Wall Street's toxic debt. The senate passed the bill 93-1. John Kyle R-AZ was the only Senator to vote no. Presidential contenders Hillary Clinton, Barrack Obama, Chris Dodd, and Joe Biden all voted in favor of the bill. They also raised the FHA limit to $417,000.

The legislation will help the Federal Housing Administration "be a source of salvation for those families who were tricked into unaffordable loans," said Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y.

Anonymous said...

Rent 1980 sq. ft. 3 bedroom 2 bath condo $1575/month 10 miles from Tysons Corner where I work. It was built in 2004. Owner pays condo fee. Had I purchased it would have cost me about $2800/month plus condo fee of $375/month. Taxes are about $4200 a year and homeowners insurance probably around $900/year. Would have a deduction of 28 cents for every dollar of interest. All that does is reduce AGI. Interest deduction isn't a tax credit so it means very little in this case where owning is far more expensive than renting. Oh, and let's not forget maintenance and repairs. According to owner condo fee has gone up twice since he purchased. Lousy deal.

And I would be stuck with something that isn't going to sell for the purchase price for many years. Wouldn't buy a condo under any circumstances. This is just a weigh station for a couple of years.

I am far better off renting in the DC area. The quality of new homes around here is awful. Vinyl siding...really.

Anonymous said...

Here's the latest from Santa Fe.

I am renting a 3br/2ba SFH on 1 acre of land for $1,350/month. Our lease is coming due in January and I'm going to ask for a rent decrease to about $1,275/month. Here's why. Last year rent on most 3br homes in my area were between $1500 to $1800/month. This year there are more homes listed for rent and it looks like most rents are now around $1300 to $1500/month.

As far as sales go. It appears the sweet spot to sell your home right now is $125 - $150/square foot. Homes priced in that range are selling, nothing else is. There was a large 3300 square foot home that was listed at $579k (and its been on the market for 15 months now) was just reduced to $409k. I'm guessing it will sell pretty fast now. FYI - We sold our house one year ago at $197/square foot.

That's a 25 - 40% price decrease in one year if you want to sell you home. Right now most people don't want to sell their home because they still have their place listed at $200+/square foot.


jrochest said...

Rent a $800 a month, 2 br 2 bath 2 level condo, about 1,000 sq ft. In a nice location, half hour walk from campus. Like all rentals in this town, pretty battered and elderly, suffering from years of deferred maintenance. Because of the rental shortage, the rent will probably go up 200 bucks, unless they sell for a condo conversion next summer. There's no rent control in this town.

Smaller and grottier 2 bedroom units in the building across the street are listed for 180,000 - 200,000, condo fees of 200.

IncreasingEquityThe HardWay said...

I own a 4100 sqft 4 bed 3.5 bath, which was built in '04. Our lot is about 13,000 sqft. Here is my average monthly budget:

$1360 P & I
$1200 Taxes
$120 Electric
$100 Gas
$49 Insurance
$40 Water
$33 Garbage
$2902 Total

We paid $386,000 and put down $146,000 for a 30 year fixed @ 5.625%. Since I've made extra principle payments, our current loan balance is about $215,000. I am hoping to pay it off in 15 years. At $94/sqft, I don't think we're in a bubble here. I assume sales will be slow, and prices will be stagnent for a while. But we're not going anywhere for at least 10 years, and I still have my 44% equity. I have no desire to help enrichen some realtor by changing residences. The worst thing here is the property taxes. We do have very good schools, though.

Anonymous said...

Denver: 1 mile east of downtown biz district right on Cheesman Park. 7th floor Beautiful view to the west of downtown and the mountains.

1200 sq ft, 2 bedroom/2 bath, basement parking, free cable, heat and a/c. $1070/month. 12 story hi rise built in 1970.

Across the street, similar units as condos go for $250-$300k, plus $400 HOA, $120/mo taxes and insurance.

Condo prices have been flat in Denver since 2000. Buying doesn't make sense here currently, but people still do it.

mitack said...

renting, san diego, nice area, 3br/2ba, ~1200 sqft house, completely renovated for me, 1600/mo. zillow
shows it 440k now from 540k 2 yrs
ago. mortgage+ taxes and ins would be
at least that much more. managed to
convince my "suzane" not to buy at
the frenzy 2-3 yrs ago. now she avoids the subject... ;-)

patientrenter said...

- $1425 rent
- 625sq ft, 2 + 1 apt + garage
- Orange Co, So CA, 2 mi to beach
- Rent + util < 4% of income

Buy alternative:
- 2+1 + garage condos in area cost $400 (for POS) to $700K

Anonymous said...

$630 per month 2 br 1 bath townhome, if it were a condo $900 including regular mortgage and say $180 condo fees. saving all kinds of paper. Beaverton Oregon

Vera said...

Los Angeles - 2300 rent - would cost 7K a month to own it.

Anonymous said...


Rent $1600

San Diego, Ca

Rancho Bernardo,

on the golf course

1300sqft, 2bd, 2ba

garage, pool......

Gated community

20 min(+-) to the beach


Anonymous said...

I pay about 295 USD (1906 swedish kronas) for a 1-room rental-apartment about 6 kilometers from Stockholm central, in a decent enough neighborhood. The apartment-building was built in the 50:ies. I pay additionaly for electricity and gas, but still - its cheap.
I have about 2300 USD left to spend after tax as a factory worker, so 15%, all in all, goes to housing. My situation is not the norm though.

Anonymous said...

We pay $547/month P/I and PT for 3br 1500SF in central illinois....with less than 8yrs left on 4.75% loan

doesn't get any better than this

LauraVella said...

$1800 a month in Alameda, for 1,265 sq.ft 2 bedroom/2 bath with 2 car garage (big) one-level condo with fireplace, and community pool & tennis courts, within walking distance to grocery stores.

Granted, it's not inexpensive to leave here... however, we're saving $5,000 + $2,000 a year on property taxes + insurance + $400 mo. homeowners dues...

However, we're sleeping like babies knowing we now longer own a depreciating anchor...oh, I mean asset.

Anonymous said...

$1275 for a 4/2.5 frame house, Atlanta exurbs, 2 acre lot; have been here about 15 1/2 yrs. Added on and improved about 10yrs ago to total 3200 sq ft. Refinanced in '03 at 4.875%, 30-year fixed. Have seen some softening of home prices in our neighborhood, but not too bad. Our timing was lucky, although we knew in our bones when we bought/refinanced that getting a fixed rate (if you could) was a no-brainer! Also, you really had to document your finances 10-15 years ago.

The Man said...

Own my own condo in Bangkok- great location, 2BR 2BA with parking. No property taxes here. Condo fee is $110 per month. Saving minimum $200K after tax per year. Now THAT's the way to live abroad eh Keefer?

This is not exaggerated.

ismellmyhand said...

We rent in Laguna Beach, CA. It's a 2 million dollar house with 180 degree views about 4 blocks from the beach. Rent is 3200 monthly but if we rented the money from the bank in exchange for a call option on the house we would be looking at about 14K monthly all in (ins. and taxes) I think. Basically 3200 rent or 14K monthly on as asset that is depreciating by 10K to 30K monthly. Orange County is going to die a nasty economic death/transition.

Anonymous said...

I pay just under $2,100 per month (P.I.T.I.) for a 7-bedroom, 6 bath, log home, 6,020 square feet, 3-car garage, on 11 acres in Tennessee, 25 minutes from the major employment center in the area. I have about 33% equity in the home. I'm married with six children, so the space is used wisely. :-) I would not mind renting if I could find something even 2/3 the size for less than the amount I'm paying every month. We paid less than $60 per sq. ft. for a 98% finished home when we bought it, so we're certainly in no bubble market even at its current value of $85 per sq. ft.

Anonymous said...
I like the idea - we need to lobby for tax breaks for renters.

banshee said...

$2200 rent for a nice suburban San Diego 4br3ba house, would have cost ~$3800 to "own" on a 30yr fixed in 2005 when we moved here.

Also "own" 3 houses, all on 15yr fixed at <5%. All will be paid off in 8 years. 2 are cashflow positive, the third is our future retirement house so I don't mind that the tenants are only paying prinicipal and a bit of the interest...

Be careful out there!

Mr Bacon said...

I pay $775 a month for my condo fees and taxes in northern NJ. No mortgate.

renting and happy said...

$1850 a month with landscaping included. We have a 3 bed/2.5 bath (about 1800 sq ft.) and we are a few minutes (about 4) from the beach in North San Diego. Awesome place to live. I have never regretted renting as we would be paying $5K a month+ if we were buying the place. No regrets at all. Life is good, even for a bitter renter. LOL

DC gal said...

Renting in Arlington, VA a 1 bedroom with spectacular view of the monuments...think opera balcony seats... for the annual DC 4th of July celebration. $1575 a month plus $80.00 for parking.

Would be willing to buy but pay no more than $2500 mortgage taxes and HOA fee per month in Fairfax area. Hubby and I are giving it another year or two. We're not about to catch a falling knife. With the money I saved I went to Dubai last summer and we plan to go to Egypt in April for a Nile River Cruise.

yoski said...

2/2, 1300 sqft in Miami, FL
rent 1400.-
insurance about $4000/year
taxes about $8000/year
so that's about $1000/month in insurance and taxes alone. The leaky roof and broken AC are extra.
The tax value the county has on this place is $350K so the mortgage would be and additional $2200 or so. Not sure what the place would actually sell for these days. Maybe $250K if my landlord be lucky.

sequoia said...

Rent 3000sqft 3 bedroom two bath on about 1/2 acre. Don't pay for HOA 500 a month. The HOA covers outside water, mowing, fertilizing, snow shoveling, and garbage. 1500 a month. Old value 2005 600K today 425k maybe.

David said...

Forest Hills, Queens, New York, NY

1 bed, 1 bath, 700 sq. feet, top floor with views southeast views over eastern Queens.

Bought in 2001 for $92000 (cash deal). Building is 100 percent owner-occupied (no speculators), minimum 50 percent down required by coop board.

Monthly costs:
$0 mortgage
$602 coop fees (includes taxes, building mortgage and insurance, heat, hot water, gas, garbage)
$80 electricity (average)
$20 insurance
$100 cable and internet

Our housing and commuting costs combined are about 10 percent of our monthly gross income.

We have all necessary stores within walking distance so we do not own a car. Parking spaces are $150 a month, however. Subway and commuter rail within ten minute walk. About 30 minutes to Manhattan.

Comparable rent in the area for the same apartment is $1200 to $1500. Our apartment would sell for about $215k to $225k.

AnonyRuss said...

$850 for a modest 3 bedroom, single-family house in a newer suburb of Phoenix.

The same house was rented out for $1000 from 2003 to 2005. It was vacant for four months when I made an offer to rent it in late 2005 after selling my Arizona stucco castle to some GSGF (Golden State Greater Fool).

Samantha Stephens said...

In 2005 we paid $147K cash for this 3K sq. ft. brick house (built 1965) on one acre.

Beautiful, wooded area with lots of wildlife across the road from golf course. Older etablished neighborhood just inside the edge of town in Southern Virginia.

Neighbors are friendly and take care of each other. Many of them have lived here 25 years or more.

Monthly costs are around $500 for taxes, insurance, and maintenance.

Love it here and consider myself very, very fortunate.

Anonymous said...

I own my 5bed/3bath home in Cave Creek AZ outright. Paid 178K cash for it in 1997. Endured numerous lectures from less succesful "financial experts" about the need to take advantage of leverage and the mortgage tax deduction. BS! Live frugally and excercise some monetary self control! I am a methodical saver, only buy used cars and have one credit card I pay off each month and monitor online each day to prevent fruad. Im a big fan of Clark Howard and John Bogle, two guys that know and speak the truth when it comes to money issues. My Taxes and Insurance come out to about 3 thousand a year, so I put away about $300 each month into my housing budget, along with an extra $200 for annual repairs and maintenance. Yes, I have and reconcile a paper budget each month. I use a ledger notebook bought at a stationary supply store and have real money in a real FDIC insured bank and of all things, a checking account that is set up to compliment my 19th century paper ledger notebook.If I run out of money I do without UNTIL I EARN MORE! There will be no Federal Bailout for me and my family, but we do not need one. I figure the spendthrifts that have these mortgage problems owe me, but I refuse to become a social parasite.

Anonymous said...

@anon 1:54 12/15/07:

No helicopters, but there are some nice areas to live in. This is the town I grew up in, and would like to own in someday, if stuff gets straightened out.

The town needs to get rid of the baby gang-bangers that are creeping up (possibly by putting a large fence just south of SD that runs along the border), get rid of all the apartment buildings (we have another town nearby that has no residential housing-- guess how bad THEY suck?), and go back to being a neighborhood instead of a couple barrios, a ghetto, and pockets of people who refuse to give up.

Anonymous said...

Denver: On the border between Bonnie Brae and Wash Park (we live in Bonnie Brae, but cross the street and we're in Wash Park). 10-15 minute walk from the DU campus and the light rail stop.

House: 80 years old, 3-3 with a study (but no dining room!). 2300 sq. ft. (1500 above ground, 800 in a nicely finished half basement). Quarter acre of land with mountain views.

Cost: $2425/month. Consists of $1950 first mortgage, $250 second mortgage (we only put 10% down), $150 taxes and $75 insurance.

BUT, we get about $500 back from the mortgage deduction, and pay about $300 to ourselves in equity. So the "true" nut is more like $1625 or so. I bet the house would rent for $1300-$1500. It would sell for about $400k. The lot is a triple, so it's pretty valuable -- if you scraped the house, you could probably get low seven figures for something nice. Popping the top would probably get you in the $600-700k range. Too bad we don't have the $$$.

Anonymous said...

Own a home, $1955/month (includes taxes and insurance).

Purchased in 2006, 30 yr fixed, 6.125% mortgage with 20% down.

5300 sq ft, 17-room historic home on five acres in western PA.

Anonymous said...

"Location: 7 minutes to Bethesda office (15 with traffic), close-in very nice/safe/white neighborhood in Montgomery County, MD (outside DC), backs to biggest CITY park in America (Rock Creek Park);"

Rock Creek Park is not the largest CITY park in the country. It is only around 2,000 acres. South Mountain Park in Phoenix, AZ is over 16,000 acres.

Anonymous said...

We rent a great house in downtown Austin Texas for $1400 a month. 3BR 1 BA, 3 killer old oak trees, right by the park and all the fancy stuff - granite, euro appliances, detached audi pod, I mean garage.

The house is valued at $350,000 to $400,000 so it would cost about $3k a month to own. ( Taxes are flippin brutal in Texas).

By the way Texans think they won't get hit by the wave. lol... Texans

Ivan said...

Rent: $2100/month. 1-bedroom 1.5-bath loft, 1 parking space, about 1k sq ft indoors, floor-to-glass windows with views from inside plus a private roof deck w/300-degree views including downtown, Bay Bridge, Potrero and Bernal hills and Twin Peaks in a hip bar/restaurant heavy section of the Mission district in San Francisco.

Kinda comparable worth: Lofts across the street; slightly nicer quality construction. No view, no roof deck. Sold last year for $850k. PITI would be $4.5-5k with 10% down.

Not moving if I can fucking help it.

billmasi said...

Two months ago BOUGHT a little 2-2 CONDO in FLORIDA. Ask was $ 139 and we settled on $ 106.

Total monthly is under $ 600 for tax, condo fees and utilities.

I'd been living in a beautiful house on the beach for $ 1,500 a month and when it went on sale, I decided I needed a place to live that I couldn't be moved out of.

I'm delighted! Price was right, I have the best backyard in the state - oaks, ponds and a deserted former golf course. All this minutes from the ocean.