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No. of Recommendations: 2
Depends on what it would cost for the renter to buy & maintain an equivalent condo.
Boston comes in as the #2 best city to rent. New York (Manhattan) is #1

Again, you're looking at "today" and today only. If you want to buy something today, yes, you might be better renting. Five years from now? Well, rents will have escalated by 20%, and the mortgage that you bought today will not have changed.

More to the point, 10 years from now your rent will be 50% higher, and your mortgage will not have changed. Along the way you will have been able to deduct your interest expense (which the renter cannot), maintenance fees (which the renter cannot), condo fees (likewise) - and you will have equity. That means if you elect to sell it, you will have gained the appreciation in price from 10 years ago, so you will be buying your new home on a different footing from someone buying for the first time.

It's the difference between putting $10,000 into a safe deposit box or $10,000 into an index fund, then 10 years later deciding to do something with the money. Which is better? The one where the money went to someone else for 10 years? Or the money which paid returns to you for 10 years, and is now worth more than when you invested it?

It's easy to make the "rental" argument if you pretend that nothing ever happens to money, and that there is no such thing as "compounding interest".

But hey, I'm thrilled to have renters. They are paying for my retirement, even as my investment continues to grow and outpace inflation.

(Yes, I'm sure there are a few areas where prices go down, but that is unusual and temporary, in my experience.)
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