Is It Worth Buying Property in the US? A Guide for Residents of Cornwall, MAY 14, 2017


Property is an excellent asset to own, even at the worst of times. The simple fact is that, unless you own an overpriced mansion, there’s always a need for it. If you’re thinking of moving to the US, or simply want a home there to rent out for some extra cash, you’ll be wondering where you can get the best value for money.

I’m not going to sugarcoat it. Property in the US is expensive, especially in comparison to Cornwall’s prices. However, some areas are much more affordable, and sometimes the extra outlay is worth it.

As a guide to get you started, here are the median values of houses in Cornwall vs. the United States.

Median home value in Cornwall

Let’s start off with the value of property at home. To buy a house in Cornwall, ON, you can expect an outlay of at least CA$209,900. The prices will vary in both directions depending on the size of the property, but this is the number we will use when comparing to other cities.

The value above will probably not get you anything bigger than a 3 bedroom house. The median value of a 5 bedroom, on the other hand, is as high as CA$347,450.

Now let’s take a look at how houses in the US compare.

*For simplicity’s sake, we’re going to be looking in US$. The median home value in Cornwall is US$153,600.

Median home value in Phoenix, AZ

Phoenix, Arizona, is one of the more affordable areas in the US. The median value is, however, still significantly higher than that of Cornwall, ON, coming in at US$208,600 – over US$50,000 higher.

Median home value in Detroit, Michigan

If you’re looking for the most affordable places in the US, you might consider buying in Detroit, Michigan. The median home value in Detroit comes in at an incredibly low US$39,100 (and it’s a buyer’s market). That price, however, increases to US$138,700 when you look in the Detroit Metro. Still, it remains the only area on our list cheaper than Cornwall.

Median home value in Miami, FL

Want to live in a beautiful city like Miami? You’re going to have to lay out some more money – almost double as much as in Cornwall. The median home value in Miami, FL is US$299,900. At the moment, it is more of a buyer’s market than a seller’s market, so if you’re considering a big purchase, now could be the time.

Median home value in Austin, TX

Move onwards to Austin, Texas, and you’ll find yourself laying out even more money. The median home value in Austin, TX is US$316,800. It is, however, a buyer’s market. So, if you can afford it and would like property in Texas, now is a good time to buy, even with comparatively high prices.

Median home value in New York, NY

It should not come as much of a surprise that the value of homes in New York, NY is the highest on our list. Property in New York City is going at a whopping US$650,000. That number will go up to US$680,000 within the next year. However, it is considered a seller’s market at the moment, and median listing prices come in at US$775,000!

Spending your Canadian dollars

Part of the reason that property in the US is nearly always more expensive than property in Cornwall is that the US dollar is significantly stronger than the Canadian dollar. To buy 1 USD, you currently need 1.37 CAD.

That’s to be expected, but there are ways to “soften” that blow. Instead of transferring your money through the bank (or whoever your grandparents used), you can get much better rates through money transfer companies. Banks and other big corporations tend to take a large commission for changing your money. Not only that, but they also give you exchange rates that are inferior to the midmarket rates you’d find online.

If you use a money transfer company, such as Currencies Direct – a leader in North America – you’ll not only pay much less for the transfer, but you’ll also get the correct rates. See, when you are quoted an inferior rate by the bank (or anyone else), it is simply a way of charging you hidden fees. Companies that focus specifically on foreign currency transfers generally let you know their low fees upfront, without sneaking any extra commissions in.

Small differences in exchange rates can make a huge difference when you’re spending money on buying something as expensive as property. With money transfer companies, you can end up saving tens of thousands of dollars.

Buying property in the US is not cheap. It’s almost always more expensive than property in Cornwall, ON. But it can be a worthwhile investment nonetheless. Especially if you go about using your money responsibly, and not spending on unnecessary, hidden expenses.

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