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Home ownership

Renting vs. buying Add to ...

​Is home ownership for you? Use this buy or rent calculator to help you do the math. It will tell you if you’d be better off buying or renting – and how many years you would have to own your home before you come out ahead. But you need to look at much more than the cost of rent or a mortgage payment to know for sure.

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A quick comparison











​Likely lower monthly costs

Fixed monthly costs

Pay a deposit of a month's rent

May pay a deposit for damages

​Likely higher monthly costs with mortgage, property taxes, utilities, maintenance, furnishing and decorating

Pay interest to the bank on mortgage

Possible unexpected repair costs

​Investment potential

​Rent money goes to your landlord

​Build equity as you pay off mortgage

Income potential


​May be able to create income by renting out rooms or subletting

​Can create income by renting out or borrowing against your home





​Not responsible for maintenance, but dependent on landlord to make timely repairs

Responsible for maintenance and repairs





​Higher rents in prime areas but you save time and money on commute

​Affordable houses in suburban areas mean you spend more time and money on commute

Flexibility to move



​Can move out almost whenever you want

​Harder to move quickly as can take time to sell

May face a mortgage penalty


4 questions to ask yourself

  1. What kind of housing are you looking for?
  2. How much can you afford?
  3. How soon do you think you'll move again?
  4. How important is home ownership for you? 

Content in this section is provided in partnership with Investor Education Fund, a non-profit organization founded and supported by the Ontario Securities Commission that provides unbiased and independent financial tools to help Canadians make better money decisions. To find out more, go to: GetSmarterAboutMoney.ca

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