The five most and least affordable housing markets

Photo By NAHB

Where can homebuyers purchase an affordable home? Well, according to the NAHB, housing affordability is at a near to record low. But, some regions are more expensive, and some are less.

Lansing-East Lansing, Mich., was the nation’s most affordable major housing market, defined as a metro with a population of at least 500,000. There, 79.3% of all new and existing homes sold in the fourth quarter were affordable to families earning the area’s median income of $97,800.

Top five affordable major housing markets:

  1. Lansing-East Lansing, Michigan
  2. Harrisburg-Carlisle, Pennsylvania
  3. Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, Indiana
  4. Dayton-Kettering, Ohio
  5. Akron, Ohio

Meanwhile, Bay City, Michigan, was rated the nation’s most affordable small market, with 88.3% of homes sold in the fourth quarter being affordable to families earning the median income of $82,300.

Top five affordable small housing markets:

  1. Bay City, Mich.
  2. Elmira, N.Y.
  3. Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, Iowa-Ill.
  4. Cumberland, Md.-W.Va.
  5. Springfield, Ohio
     

For the 13th straight quarter, Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, Calif., remained the nation’s least affordable major housing market. There, just 2.7% of the homes sold during the fourth quarter were affordable to families earning the area’s median income of $98,200.

Top five least affordable major housing markets—all located in California:

  1. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale
  2. Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine 
  3. San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad
  4. Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura
  5. San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City
     

The top five least affordable small housing markets were also in the Golden State. At the very bottom of the affordability chart was Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, Calif., where 5.2% of all new and existing homes sold in the fourth quarter were affordable to families earning the area median income of $107,300.

Top five least affordable small housing markets—all located in California:

  1. Santa Maria-Santa Barbara
  2. San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles
  3. Napa
  4. Salinas
  5. Merced

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Larry Adams | Editor

Larry Adams is a Chicago-based writer and editor who writes about how things get done. A former wire service and community newspaper reporter, Larry is an award-winning writer with more than three decades of experience. In addition to writing about woodworking, he has covered science, metrology, metalworking, industrial design, quality control, imaging, Swiss and micromanufacturing . He was previously a Tabbie Award winner for his coverage of nano-based coatings technology for the automotive industry. Larry volunteers for the historic preservation group, the Kalo Foundation/Ianelli Studios, and the science-based group, Chicago Council on Science and Technology (C2ST).