RealtyTrac just published this chart showing the monthly cost of renting versus owning a home across the country. As of today, rents in Salt Lake County are more expensive than the average mortgage payment by about $30. As a result of the gigantic student populations at either end of University Parkway, Utah County’s rents are $200 less expensive than in Salt Lake County. The average mortgage payment is $133 higher that the average rent in Happy Valley. With an average appreciation rate of 5% on a $229,900 median sales price home, you stand to gain $11,500 is just the first year of home ownership, or roughly 1000% return on your $133 investment into your future. Don’t be a renter.