We’ve looked at the issue of Buy vs Rent quite a few times over the years. You can imagine my thrill at seeing the map (below) showing various city ratios of Purchase to Rent prices from around the country.
It is consistent with our main Housing theme: Prices remain way too high for any sort of a bottom to be near. Why? During the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s, the average rent ratio nationwide was between 10 – 14.
It broke out of that historical range in 2003, hitting ~19 when the housing
market peaked in 2006.
Where is the ratio today? Pick a city:
As Home Prices Drop Low Enough, a Committed Renter Decides to Buy
NYT, May 28, 2008