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Silver Lake Case Study: What You Get Renting vs. Buying

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Slide the bar to see more of one or the other. "Buy" is on the left. "Rent" is on the right.

Should you rent or should you buy? The answer to that question involves a whole lot of personal variables (many of which are discussed in Curbed University), but to give you an idea of the differences at play, we picked two somewhat comparable homes and pitted them against in each other in a rent vs. buy deathmatch. Both have two bedrooms and two bathrooms and both are roughly in Silver Lake. The house for sale is at 1310 N. Hoover St.; the townhouse for rent is at 863 Dillon St. Let's begin.

Location
Buy: Technically in Los Feliz, on the border with Silver Lake. Might be a little close to the Sunset/Fountain intersection for some people's preferences, but within walking distance to Vons, the Vista, and all kinds of other businesses.
Rent: Below Sunset Blvd., near its intersection with Silver Lake. Walking distance to the little Laurel and Hardy Park and the Parkman Ave. cluster of businesses.




Slide the bar to see more of one or the other. "Buy" is on the left. "Rent" is on the right.

Space
Buy: 964 square feet.
Rent: The city's zoning website says the building is 5,000 square feet with seven units, so we can peg this two-story one at roughly 700 square feet.

Privacy
Buy: It's a single family house.
Rent: It's a townhouse in a building with several other units.




Slide the bar to see more of one or the other. "Buy" is on the left. "Rent" is on the right.

Outdoor area
Buy: Small deck and yard areas
Rent: A small private patio

Parking
Buy: The garage has been converted, but there is a bit of a driveway. There's no permit parking on the street, so things could get nasty on a weekend night.
Rent: Parking for two.

Charm
Buy: The 1911 house has that whitewashed flipper look, but is nice and open and has Brazilian cherry wood floors.
Rent: Those windows, that kitchen tile, the vintage stove, the weird cavelike entrance? Yeah, this 1920s place has a little charm.




Slide the bar to see more of one or the other. "Buy" is on the left. "Rent" is on the right.

Price
Buy: $549,000. At $570 per square foot, it's high for the neighborhood, so it could sell below asking.
Rent: $2,295 per month with a one year lease. Gas is paid.
Take a look at what the New York Times's rent vs. buy calculator has to say:


· Rookie Roosts 2012 [Curbed LA]