The Ultimate
Home Calculator

Most rent vs. own calculators only compare monthly housing cost. Cash flow is important but it's more important to compare wealth built over time. You might save a little cash each month by renting but over over 5 years, 10 years, or more will you build more wealth by renting or owning? Let's take a look!


Buy a home (with a fixed-rate 30 yr mortgage) and accumulate home equity.



Rent the same home and invest the amount you would have spent on a down payment into the market.

To make it apples-to-apples, if monthly rental cost is less than monthly ownership cost (or vice versa), that difference is also invested in the market along the way. You can choose the annual return you expect from market investments (historically the S&P has returned about 10%) and other important factors such as home value appreciation, rent increases, etc.


  1. 1. This calculator does not include income tax benefits associated with home ownership.
  2. 2. For the home purchase scenario, the calculator assumes a refinance (90% LTV) after 7 years to maintain optimal leverage. Refi costs are built in.

To get started, just change these fields. The numbers below will update automatically.


Total Monthly Ownership Cost (Y1)


Total Monthly Rental Cost (Y1)
Here's the results:
Wealth Accumulated
Own Rent
5 years
10 years
20 years

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* ©2022 Swell Financial, Inc. Swell Financial, Inc. ("Swell") is a financial technology company, not a bank, financial advisor, or investment advisor. Swell does not make investment recommendations and is not endorsing any particular investment opportunity. This Ultimate Home Calculator is offered for informational purposes only, and is not a guarantee or promise that a particular housing choice will produce a particular financial result.