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Buy or rent at Sage in Quail Hill

Posted: 04 Jan 2012 04:00 AM PST

On Monday I received an email from a reader who wanted to see a comparison between the monthly cost of buying a home to that of renting the same basic home.  In this post I'm going to look specifically at the Plan 3 homes in the Sage tract at Quail Hill.  Sage is a detached condo tract and the Plan 3 is a 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath, 1275 square foot home with an attached 2 car garage and a small private patio. These same, basically exact detached condo floorplans are also found in other villages in Irvine and in the future I may take a look at how pricing differs for the same plan across villages.  Today, we'll see what it might cost to buy and rent a Sage Plan 3.  

Currently, there are two Plan 3s for sale on the market:

103 Windchime at $529,000 - Listed on 1/2/2012

68 Duet at $450,000 (Short Sale) - Listed 6/20/2011

The actual closed sales for Sage Plan 3's over the last year are:

10/10/11 18 Duet $455,000
9/29/11 62 Duet (REO) $440,000
8/25/11 44 Duet $449,000
8/17/11 201 Dewdrop (REO) $445,000
6/23/11 84 Windchime $515,000
4/19/11 54 Reunion (REO) $455,000

Based on this data, I'm going to use a sales price of $450k.  Here's my take on what the cost would be if one were to purchase at $450k and put 20% down.

Purchase Price $450,000    
Closing costs $13,500 3%  
Total price $463,500    
Down payment $103,500 20%  
Loan Amount / Percentage Of Price $360,000 80%  
Interest Rate / Period (months) 4.00% 360  
  Monthly Yearly  
Mortgage Payment $1,719 $20,624  
Interest Component $1,200 $14,400  
Property Tax $394 $4,725 1.05%
Special Assessments $194 $2,332 0.52%
Effective Tax rate     1​.57%
Insurance $50 $600  
HOA 1 $116 $1,392  
HOA 2 $120 $1,440  
Cash Out $2,593 $31,114  
Interest paid   $14,400  
Property tax   $4,725  
Total deductible   $19,125  
Tax benefit $398 $4,781 25%
Opportunity cost of down payment -$173 -$2,070 2%
Principal paid in mortgage payment $519 -$6,224  
Total Adjustments $745 $8,936  
Cost (Cash Out - Adjustments) $1,848 $22,178  

20% down payments, low interest rates, tax benefits and the amount paid towards principal all bring the cost to about $1848/month.  Please let me know if you think any of the inputs are incorrect or if you think the spreadsheet is missing something.  Another tool is the NY Times Buy versus Rent calculator that takes into account many other details.

So, what is the cost to rent a Plan 3?  There is one available on the market right now:

50 Duet - Available for $2450/month

Also, the last Plan 3 that was leased was 84 Windchime which was leased for $2600/month on 8/19/2011.  Although these are all Sage Plan 3s, each unit is different and there are factors such as the condition of the home, the quality of upgrades, the location, etc which will all affect the price/rent.  Based on the cost of owning versus that of renting a Plan 3, what would you do?

Let me know if you found this post helpful and if there are any other plans/tracts/neighborhoods that you'd like me to look into.


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