California Metros Least Affordable in Nation

February 21, 2008 No Comments »

too high

Unsurprisingly, the five least affordable metropolitan areas in the United States are situated in California, a report by the National Association of Home Builders and Wells Fargo revealed.

The quarterly Housing Opportunity Index found that the Napa, California metro was the least affordable during the fourth quarter with a median sales price of $540,000 and a median family income of $75,800, meaning only 4.9 percent of median households could afford such a home.

The Salinas, CA metro was second worst, with a 5.6 percent affordability rate, followed by Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA with a 6.2 percent clip, the Bay Area with a 7.9 percent rate, and Santa Ana-Anaheim-Irvine, CA with an 8.4 percent rate.

Metro areas in California made up 8 of the worst 10 housing markets in terms of affordability, and 24 of the bottom 30, with areas like Riverside, San Bernardino, Modesto, and San Diego also joining the ranks.

The dismal affordability rates in these regions shed some light on why mortgage lenders increasingly added high-risk, ultra-low payment loan programs (option arm) to their product mix to fuel sales.

And why many of these areas are now overrun with foreclosure filings and floundering property values.

On the flip side, Kokomo, Indiana was the most affordable metro during the fourth quarter, with a median sales price of $91,000, median income of $59,700, and an affordability rate of 92.9 percent.

It was followed by Springfield, OH with a 92.7 percent affordability rate, Saginaw, MI with 89.8 percent, Monroe, MI with 89.7 percent, and Canton-Massillon, OH with 89.6 percent.

The state of Michigan held half of the top ten most affordable metros in the United States.

See the complete list of 220 metros to see how affordable your neck of the woods is.

(photo: maveric2003)

Leave A Response