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Renters Have Shorter Commutes Than Homeowners

Commutes to work

Digested from “How Being a Renter Influences Your Commute”
The Atlantic CityLab (3/8/16) Florida, Richard

There’s a new reason to rent: It may shave off time you spend commuting to work. The daily grind of traveling to a job takes the average American 52 minutes — eight minutes longer than 30 years ago. But those who rent appear to enjoy quicker trips to and from the office.

Research conducted by Trulia that drew from a Harris poll survey and 2014 American Community Survey data found that in 43 out of 50 of the country’s largest metro areas, the commute for renters is about 1.5 minutes shorter than for homeowners, adding up to a full workday’s worth of saved time over the course of a year.

In 2014, renters living in Riverside-San Bernardino, California; Houston; and Long Island, New York, had the shortest commutes compared with their home-owning counterparts. Washington, D.C.; Dallas; Austin, Texas; Memphis, Tennessee; Newark, New Jersey; and Columbus, Ohio, were among other cities where renters had the commuting advantage.

This dynamic wasn’t true in all cities, however. Renters in San Francisco, Detroit and Cleveland actually had longer commutes than those who owned homes.

Although homeowners tend to be older and live in houses to accommodate families, the study found that even after controlling for family size and number of bedrooms, renters still experienced quicker commuting times. This adds grist to another study, which determined that dual-breadwinner households are moving to the city to live closer to jobs and public transportation so that they can spend more time with each other.

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