To buy or not to buy?

To buy or not to buy?Is there any dispute as to the superiority of home ownership over renting? As this letter to The Miami Herald would suggest, yes, there is.Home ownership is the American Dream. It enhances civic pride, improves voter turnout, lowers crime and produces higher levels of education. Tax policy encourages people to buy rather than rent.

But from an individual financial standpoint, it doesn’t always make sense. A recent study by myself and my colleague, Eli Beracha, sought to balance the benefits (appreciation and interest deduction) against the costs (maintenance, taxes, lost interest income from down payment and selling expenses) of ownership and then compared the “net cost” of ownership with that of renting.

The study looked at 28 communities around the country, including South Florida.

Read: “To buy or not to buy?,” an article from

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