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Buying Versus Renting – Determinants of the Net Present Value of Home Ownership for Individual Households

Citation
Tabner I (2016) Buying Versus Renting – Determinants of the Net Present Value of Home Ownership for Individual Households, International Review of Financial Analysis, 48, pp. 233-246.

Abstract
The tenure decision upon whether to buy or to rent accommodation has long-term consequences for households' financial wellbeing that influence macroeconomic development and stability when the cumulative effects of individual decisions are aggregated across populations. The author explains how the net present value (NPV) of ownership versus renting can be used as a framework for informing housing tenure decisions. Increases in holding periods, inflation and the spread between imputed rent and the opportunity cost of household savings shifts the balance in favour of ownership. With plausible assumptions the model demonstrates that households typically need a holding period of between five and ten years to achieve a breakeven NPV. The findings support the conjecture that inflation transfers wealth from renters and mortgage providers to owners, whereas deflation reverses the flow until rising default levels establish a new equilibrium.

Keywords
House prices; Real estate; Valuation; Household finance; Tenure choice; Buying versus renting

StatusPublished
AuthorsTabner Isaac
Publication date12/2016
Publication date online18/10/2016
Date accepted by journal17/10/2016
PublisherElsevier
ISSN 1057-5219
LanguageEnglish

Journal
International Review of Financial Analysis: Volume 48

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