Here's how much renting will cost you versus buying a home

The cost of buying a place to live in the U.S. shot through the roof last year as surging mortgage rates pushed the price of homeownership beyond many families' budgets.

Real estate has gotten so expensive that in most American cities, residents would save money by renting, according to a recent report from In 45 of the country's 50 largest metro areas, renting is cheaper than buying, the real estate research service found, which based its analysis on the cost of buying a starter home with a 7% down payment and included average taxes, insurance and homeowners association fees.

On average, buyers could expect to spend $2,600 per month on housing costs — $900 more than the average renters' costs, the site found

Pricey West Coast cities have some of the largest disparities between renting and owning, noted Danielle Hale, chief economist for

"Renters are going to save more, and buyers are going to pay more, in markets that have been historically very expensive and tend to be dominated by the tech industry — areas like Austin [Texas], San Francisco, Seattle," she told CBS News.

In Austin, for example, a homebuyer's monthly cost to own a home is double what they'd pay to rent, Hale noted.

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