DON'T BUY: These 7 Cities Are Renters' Markets

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Photo: Daniel Goodman / Business Insider

Despite record low mortgage rates and an apparent bottoming in home prices, Americans have increasingly opted to rent than buy their homes as the economic recovery remains anemic and uncertain.We drew on Zillow’s newest metric – the breakeven horizon – to identify 7 housing markets where it’s better to rent a home than buy one.

The breakeven horizon refers to the number of years after which buying a home is more “financially advantageous” than renting one. So, with a longer breakeven horizon it makes more sense to rent.

Unlike the price-to-rent ratio this metric includes a whole range of possible costs including mortgage payments, property taxes, utilities costs etc.

Note: The list is drawn for the 30 largest metro areas. Median list and rent price are for June 2012.

This story was originally published by Zillow.The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of Zillow.

San Diego, California

Breakeven horizon:
3.6 years

Price-to-rent ratio:
14.0

Median list price:
$369,000

Median rent price:
$1,750

Source: Zillow

Seattle, Washington

Breakeven horizon:
4.0 years

Price-to-rent ratio:
13.4

Median list price:
$290,000

Median rent price:
$1,270

Source: Zillow

Boston, Massachusetts

Breakeven horizon:
4.3 years

Price-to-rent ratio:
13.4

Median list price:
$347,900

Median rent price:
$2,000

Source: Zillow

Los Angeles, California

Breakeven horizon:
4.3 years

Price-to-rent ratio:
14.2

Median list price:
$399,000

Median rent price:
$1,850

Source: Zillow

New York, New York

Breakeven horizon:
5.1 years

Price-to-rent ratio:
12.8

Median list price:
$389,000

Median rent price:
$2,600

Source: Zillow

San Francisco, California

Breakeven horizon:
5.9 years

Price-to-rent ratio:
16.0

Median list price:
$519,000

Median rent price:
$1,960

Source: Zillow

San Jose, California

Breakeven horizon:
8.3 years

Price-to-rent ratio:
18.9

Median list price:
$590,000

Median rent price:
$2,050

Source: Zillow

Now look at the cities where home prices are expected to grow the most by 2017...

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