It is cheaper by tens of thousands of dollars a year to buy homes and units in a host of suburbs and towns across the Pilbara rather than paying rent.

Research by RP Data shows that in Port Hedland, a person buying a home would be almost $4000 a month better off than someone paying the median rent.

Port Hedland and surrounding suburbs and towns, according to RP Data, have the biggest differences between rents and mortgage payments in the country.

There are also an increasing number of suburbs in Perth where a person would be financially better off by buying rather than renting.

Across WA, there are 48 locations where it is cheaper to service a mortgage than a rental lease.

Nationally, there are now 494 locations, a jump of more than 25 per cent over October.

Company research director Tim Lawless said a combination of tight rental markets and static or falling house prices meant it was a good time to look at buying.

“In some suburbs it may actually be cheaper buying than renting, especially where we are seeing evidence of tight rental markets resulting in rental increases and lower home values,” he said.

“For many buyers now is a good time to either re-enter the market or buy their first home.”
While the difference between renting and buying is almost $4000 a month in Port Hedland is not much cheaper in South Hedland, where the difference is $3441.

Units in Port Hedland are $2766 a month cheaper to buy than rent, while in Pegs Creek homebuyers are $2501 a month better off than those renting.

Around Dampier the difference is almost $1400 a month, while in Derby the difference is $892 a month.

In Perth, Burswood homes are $855 a month cheaper to buy than rent, while in Perth city centre the advantage in favour of buying is $307.

Other Perth suburbs where it is cheaper to buy include Ascot (units are $211 cheaper), Orelia ($53), Girrawheen ($47), Mt Hawthorn ($42) and Brookdale ($35).

For homebuyers prepared to pay $50 extra a week to own their part of WA, the number of spots within their price range almost doubles.

In Perth alone, there are 36 suburbs where the repayment on the median mortgage is within $50 of the median rent.

The West Australian

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