Fat-cat boffins from York University have concluded after a year's study and free Government grants that renting a house is cheaper than buying it.
The study, commissioned by Hometrack and paid for by taxpayers' money, examined hundreds of examples and considered such factors as interest rates, mortgage costs and consumer incomes. It discovered that the average cost of a home in England and Wales is £176,300, which is more than it used to be. It recorded that houses in some parts of the country cost more than they do in other parts. And it confirmed that bigger houses cost more than smaller ones.
The study examined the private rental sector, and compared how much a tenant had to pay in rent with how much he would have to pay if he bought the house.
Professor Steve Wilcox said:
"If you take the example of a tenant living in a 3 bedroomed house, who is paying, say, £500 per month over a year, for a one year assured shorthold tenancy, that means he pays £6,000. Compare that with the cost of buying a 3 bedroomed house, which is £176,300. It doesn't take a degree in mathematics to recognise that the tenant is laughing all the way to the bank."
Professor Wilcox's next study will be to compare whether fresh food is tastier and fresher than food that is one year past its sell-by date.