NAHB report: Housing affordability nationwide rises to highest level in four yearsMortgagePress.comNAHB, home builders, housing affordability, National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index
With home prices decreasing and interest rates holding at
historically low levels, the number of potential home buyers
nationwide who can afford to buy new and existing homes has reached
the highest level in more than four years, according to the
National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing
Opportunity Index (HOI).
According to the third-quarter HOI readings, 56.1 percent of all
new and existing homes that were sold were affordable to families
earning the national median income of $61,500, far more than the
40.4 percent of families who could afford homes at the peak of the
"If there is a silver lining to this crisis, it would be that
some housing markets have become more affordable with a larger
inventory to choose from," said NAHB Chairman Sandy Dunn, a home
builder from Point Pleasant, W. Va. "But this is undeniably a
crisis and Congress needs to act on housing stimulus to get the
market moving again."
The two most affordable major housing markets in the country
during the third quarter of the year were Indianapolis, Ind., and
Youngstown, Ohio, according to the HOI. In both Indianapolis and
Youngstown, 91.0 percent of homes sold in the third quarter were
affordable to families earning the areas median household incomes
of $65,100 and $52,000, respectively.
Also near the top of the list for affordable major metropolitan
areas were Grand Rapids-Wyoming, Mich.; Warren-Troy-Farmington
Hills, Mich.; and Detroit-Livonia-Dearborn, Mich., in that
One smaller metro market (fewer than 500,000 people) outranked
all others in terms of housing affordability during the third
quarter of 2008Springfield, Ohio, where 92.9 percent of all homes
sold in the period were affordable to families earning that area's
median household income of $54,500.
New York-White Plains-Wayne, N.Y.-N.J., was the nation's least
affordable major housing market for the second consecutive quarter.
In the New York market, 10.6 percent of the new and existing homes
sold during the third quarter were affordable to those earning the
areas median family income of $63,000.
Other major metro areas at the bottom of the housing
affordability chart included San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City,
Calif.; Nassau-Suffolk, N.Y.; Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale,
Calif.; and Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, Fla., in that order.
Among smaller metro areas, the other markets at the bottom of
the affordability chart were San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles, Calif.;
Santa Cruz-Watsonville, Calif.; Napa, Calif.; and Bend, Ore.,
Please visit www.nahb.org/hoi for tables,
historic data and details.