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Rent or buy? Housing experts discuss issues of renting and buying a home in Vermont

Posted by: Marina Demas on 6/16/2015

The question of whether to rent or buy a home has been a huge issue facing many Vermonters. David Adams, chief of program operations and Leslie Black-Plumeau, research and communications coordinator at VHFA were both interviewed in May by the Champlain Business Journal discussing the issues pertaining to the decision to buy a home in Vermont.

According to the National Association of Home Builders, the 2011 Census Data showed that 41 percent of all buyers were under the age of 35. Young-adult home ownership rates have fallen since the housing market crash in 2005. Down payment, closing costs and student loan balances are some of  many reasons why young Vermonters are renting instead of buying homes. 

Adams stated, "There's quite a gap in Vermont between the median household income relative to the median cost of a new home." Housingdata.org shows that the median price of a home in Vermont in 2014 was $195,000. The annual income required to support the mortgage, insurance and taxes was $57,380 as well as $15,939 cash in closing. In order to buy a home, you need to have enough money to make a down payment, have a good credit standing, have a stable income, and positive debt-to-income ratios. Renting in Vermont is not cheap either. Many households are paying more than half their income in rent. It is very difficult for people to save up money for a down payment on a house and maintain good credit while paying rent.