According to a study by the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation as reported on their Monthly Economic Summary for March 2007: "the apartment vacancy rate in Metro Denver increased slightly from third quarter to fourth quarter but the fourth quarter 2006 vacancy rate of 7% stands well below the 7.9% vacancy rate reported a year earlier. For the year, the average vacancy rate in the seven-county region declined from 8.2% in 2005 to 7% in 2006. The study also reported that the last time the annual vacancy rate was lower than 7% was in 2001 when the metro region posted a 6.4% rate, and in the last five years about 25,000 rental units have been added to the market. The average monthly apartment rent also decreased from third quarter to fourth quarter. On an annual basis, the average apartment rental rate was 1.2% higher in 2006 than in 2005."
We emphasis the benefits of equity appreciation and the monthly cash flow benefits of owning a home as a result of interest and property tax deductions. I recently assisted a client who was struggling with the idea of increasing his monthly housing expense from his present rent of $1,500 to a new mortgage payment of $2,050; once he realized that the net effect of his tax deduction would return $408 in monthly cash flow his net increase was only $142 monthly to own a home of his own.
The rent vs. buy decision is much easier to make once a renter grasp these concepts including the wealth building aspect of equity appreciation. All else being equal, I cannot think of a reason why anyone would be better served renting as opposed to buying a home of their own.