Despite downturn, homes still not affordable

From the Center for Housing Policy:


Homeownership has become slightly more affordable during the current housing downturn, but still remains far out of reach for the majority of workers nationwide, according to Paycheck to Paycheck: Wages and the Cost of Housing in America. This new study compares housing costs in more than 200 U.S. metropolitan areas with the wages earned by workers in 60 occupations and was released today by the Center for Housing Policy, the research affiliate of the National Housing Conference (NHC). Specifically, when looking at the five highest-growth occupations – registered nurses, retail salespersons, customer service representatives, food preparation workers and office clerks (in order of growth) – based on median annual income, homeownership is unaffordable for all five occupations in the majority of the 201 metro areas studied. Even registered nurses, who have relatively higher salaries, are unable to purchase a median-priced home in 108 of the markets, which represents only a marginal improvement when compared to 114 metro markets that were unaffordable to these workers in 2006. The second-highest paying occupation of these five, customer service representatives, cannot afford to buy a home in 185 of the markets. Retail salespersons and food preparation workers were priced out of all 201 markets, representing – surprisingly – no change in homeownership affordability for these workers in today’s economy.

Income Needed to Purchase a Home from 2006 to 2007

Income Needed to Purchase a Home
Qualifying Income 2007
New York, NY – $171,505
Suffolk-Nassau, NY – $147,004
Newark, NJ – $133,611
Ocean City, NJ – $139,037
Edison, NJ – $113,030
Trenton, NJ – $86,569
Atlantic, NJ – $84,936
Camden, NJ – $73,502
Vineland, NJ – $52,922

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5 Responses to Despite downturn, homes still not affordable

  1. Vince says:

    MLS# 2455932 MLS# 2449879. These are condos listed at 469K and 449K. Ridiculous prices. Vacant since July 2007. The builder still does’nt get it.

  2. I see that where I live it’s very hard to own your own home and on one income almost impossible. Unless you have a great income with room for advancement I would be leary to even attempt to buy a home currently. There is alot to be considered house insurance keeps rising and taxes. Sometimes just those extras is the difference between affording the home not the mortgage payment.

  3. Jill says:

    This is an unexpected consequence of the dwindling job and wage base in this country. Soon it will look just like the middle ages. We’ll all be digging turnips and picking tomatoes for the tables of the landed gentry.

  4. bruiser says:

    Wages are stagnant, especially for those of us who make less than 60k. Starter house prices have doubled or more over the past 6 years. No developers are building new starter houses at starter prices. The prices on existing inventory must come down, at some point.

  5. syncmaster says:

    So what’s a man gotta do to be part of the landed gentry?

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