Buy vs. Rent Calculator

Use this Buy vs. Rent Calculator to help compare the costs of renting to buying a home.

If you have questions about the terms used in the calculator scroll down to the bottom of the page for definitions and guidelines.



Some helpful guidelines and definitions of terms that might not be clear:

  • Home Value – the price of the home you would buy.
  • Years Before Sell – how long you intend to live in the home you purchase.
  • Selling Cost – generally, if you list your home for sale with a real estate agent you can expect to pay 3% of the sale price to the listing agent and 3% to the buyer’s agent.  We suggest you add an additional 1% to cover title and escrow fees and any other unexpected costs for a total of 7%.
  • Amount – purchase price less down payment.
  • Length – will you be getting a 30-year mortgage or a 15-year mortgage?
  • Points – there are costs involved with obtaining a mortgage.  The percent entered here should include any costs of financing that will be paid out of pocket.
  • Your Tax Rate – federal and state tax rates combined.
  • Annual Taxes – property taxes.
  • Annual Insurance – homeowners insurance.
  • Annual PMI – private mortgage insurance for mortgages with less than 20% down payment.  The default value is a good place to start.