High cap rates and low interest rates make now a great time to buy

cap rate
cap rate

With all the hype about how home ownership is dead and real estate is no longer a good investment, it's useful to look at some numbers.

Instead of all the headlines and hysteria, numbers can tell us -- with some objectivity -- whether real estate is attractively priced.

Today's Wall Street Journal reports (subscription required) that "The average cap rate for office properties in central business districts jumped to 8.8% in December from 8.56% in November. The December number was the highest rate for that category since May 2003. Meanwhile, average cap rates for apartment buildings was 7.36% in December, up from 7.09% in November."