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Website: Buying home cheaper than renting in Phoenix

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Buying a home may actually be cheaper than renting, a home-pricing website said. says monthly payments are less for homeowners than renters.

"Owning a house is about 38 percent cheaper than renting," said Valley real estate expert Dean Wegner.

This average monthly payment does not include maintenance costs for homeowners.

Wegner said the reason it's cheaper to buy is the recession.

"This is much different than 2005 when renting was so much cheaper than owning because people were paying $400,000 for a house that you can buy for $200,000 now," he said. "Home prices went down 56 percent (during the recession), and they still haven't fully recovered in all areas. People are getting bargains left and right.

"Meanwhile, the rental pool got very aggressive. After the recession, a lot of people had to run to rent. As a result, the rental prices went up quite substantially."

Wegner said those rental prices have not come down. said that with a 4.5 percent, 30-year fixed rate loan, it costs about 33 percent less to buy opposed to renting in Phoenix. That figure is based on the homeowner staying for seven years, pay 25 percent in taxes and itemize deductions.

In Tucson, buying is 42 percent cheaper.

To read the report from Trulia, click here.

About the Author

Years with the company: I started on January 2, 2006.

Education: I was born in San Antonio, Texas, but we moved to Phoenix when I was one-year-old in 1957. I grew up here and graduated from Alhambra High School and attended Phoenix College.

Family: I am married to my wife Rene', who is a librarian in the Washington school district. During free time, I may be found playing basketball in the driveway with my son, Devin. He's also keeping me busy with school, Little League, and playing in chess tournaments around the Valley.

Favorite food: Lots of favorite food, but our favorite restaurant is Fajitas.

Favorite spot in Arizona: The Little America Hotel in Flagstaff.

Favorite news memory: We have to go back to October 15, 1979. I was a country music air personality at KROP Radio in Brawley, California, when we had a 6.7 earthquake. Thankfully, there were no deaths and only minor injuries, but the entire community was pretty freaked out and listening to the station on their transistor radios. I would not want to go through an earthquake again, but it sure was a great night to work in radio and see how it can make a difference in people's lives.

First job: Working as a stringer for 'The Arizona Republic' at high school football games. My first real job was flipping burgers at the old Sandy's Hamburgers at 51st Avenue and Indian School Road. My first radio job was as announcer at KALJ radio in Yuma in 1977.

First concert: Doug Oldham gospel concert in the 1970s at the old East High School in Phoenix.

Favorite sports team: Phoenix Roadrunners minor league hockey. My dad took me to a game when I was in grade school, and I was hooked. I wanted to be a radio hockey play-by-play man. I used to take my cassette recorder and sit up in the rafters of the Coliseum and do play-by-play. It was great later in life to also take my son to Roadrunners games. Too bad the team just folded, I'll miss them. (Going to the Coyotes is fun, but they're not "my" team.)

Outside interests: My family and I are active in our church - Northern Hills Community Church in Phoenix. We enjoy going to movies, sporting events, and like to vacation at the Beach Cottages in the Pacific Beach area of San Diego. And I love to play catch, basketball, football with my son.


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