Mind the gap – homeowners up to 18% better off per month than renters

21 February 2020

Renters are paying up to 18% more each month than those who own their own homes in some parts of the UK, according to the latest Halifax Buying vs. Renting Review.

The gap is greatest in London, where homeowners save 18% on average (£3,727 annually), followed by the South East (17%), South West and Scotland (both 16%). Buyers across all UK regions save upwards of 10% when compared to renters in the same area, with the exception of Yorkshire and The Humber, where homeowners save just 3% on average – £235 per year.

The research looks at the housing costs1 associated with a mortgage on a three-bed home, compared to the average monthly rent of the same property type [table 1].

Russell Galley, Managing Director, Halifax, said: “The overall gap between home buying and renting is at its smallest margin for 10 years, but this masks some significant regional variations where homeowners are making some considerable savings on monthly costs.

“While Londoners stand to save the most from home ownership compared to renting, buyers in the South East and South West of England and north of the border in Scotland are also reaping the benefits. Buyers in two thirds of UK regions are saving upwards of £1,000 a year from living in a home they own, with the smallest saving for homeowners in Yorkshire and Humberside at £227.”

At a UK level, homeowners are saving 3% on average (£227 annually) with the gap reducing from 17% year-on-year since 2015, when buyers were saving an average of £1476 per year or £123 per month.

This has reversed from 2009, when it was buying that was more expensive, and renters saved on average £209 per year or £17 per month.

Over the last 10 years, with house prices increasing, average monthly buying costs have also increased by 26% (£150), driven by an increase in the average mortgage payment and a rise in the amount of the average deposit. The cost of renting has increased by 33% (£186) over the past 10 years to £747.