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What's happening with home prices in the 100 largest metropolitan areas? See HSH's updated "Home Price Recovery Index" to find out!

The salary you must earn to buy a home in 27 metros

See below exactly how much salary you would need to earn in order to afford the principal, interest, taxes and insurance payments on a median-priced home in 27 metro areas.

Key takeaways:

  • Quarter-to-quarter, home-price changes were mixed, with 13 metros seeing declines and 14 seeing increases.
  • Excepting Pittsburgh, prices were up on a year-over-year basis in all of the metros we cover, with gains as high as 15.17 percent.
  • For the second consecutive quarter, mortgage rates were down across the board. 
  • Lower mortgage rates were more than enough to offset small home-price increases, improving affordability in all but four markets.
  • A large quarterly bump in home prices means that buying a median-priced home in the LA metro area now requires a jumbo mortgage.

PLEASE SEE: Metro area definitions

 

Chicago

How much salary do you need to earn in order to afford the principal, interest, tax and insurance payments on a median-priced home in your metro area?

To find out, HSH.com took the National Association of Realtors’ 2016 third-quarter data for median-home prices and HSH.com’s 2016 third-quarter average interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages to determine how much of your salary it would take to afford the base cost of owning a home -- the principal, interest, taxes and insurance -- in 27 metro areas.

We used standard 28 percent "front-end" debt ratios and a 20 percent down payment subtracted from the NAR’s median-home-price data to arrive at our figures. We've incorporated available information on property taxes and homeowner’s insurance costs to more accurately reflect the income needed in a given market. Read more about the methodology and inputs on the final slide of this slideshow.

In the commentary section of each slide, we discuss how the required salary would change if you were to put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent. Here’s a hint: things get more expensive when you cut the down payment in half.

Third-quarter analysis: A tight supply of homes for sale is keeping upward pressure on prices. In the release that accompanied the third-quarter data, NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said that "Mortgage rates around historical lows and solid local job creation created a winning formula for sustained home buying demand all summer long. Unfortunately for house hunters in several of the top job producing metro areas around the country, deficient supply levels limited their options and drove prices higher — especially in markets in the West and South."    

Mr. Yun’s take on market conditions is that “sales sputtered in the third quarter because inventory could not catch up with what was being quickly sold,” and he expressed some concerns about how the same potential home buyers might face even more adverse conditions in the coming months. He added, "If mortgage rates start to rise heading into next year, prospective buyers could face weakening affordability conditions in their market unless supply dramatically improves. That's why it's absolutely imperative that home builders ramp up the production of more single-family homes to meet demand and slow price growth."

Here’s a current look at how much salary you would need to earn in order to afford the principal, interest, taxes and insurance payments on a median-priced home in your metro area.

Mortgage rate: 3.49 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.13 percent

Home price: $140,000

  • Quarterly change: -0.36 percent
  • YOY change: 0.00 percent

Monthly payment: $745.79

Salary: $31,962.36

  • Quarterly change: -$427.73

Modest declines in the rates and prices caused the required salary figure to fall by $428 during the third quarter. If home buyers in the Pittsburgh metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $31,962.36 to $36,633.28.

Mortgage rate: 3.58 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.14 percent

Home price: $138,900

  • Quarterly change: +0.58 percent
  • YOY change: +5.23 percent

Monthly payment: $797.64

Salary: $34,184.64

  • Quarterly change: -$249.31

A 0.14-percent decline in mortgage rates was enough to offset a home-price increase of less than 1 percent, causing the required salary figure to improve by nearly $250. If home buyers in the Cleveland metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $34,184.64 to $38,848.83.

Mortgage rate: 3.63 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.16 percent

Home price: $157,000

  • Quarterly change: -2.24 percent
  • YOY change: +4.46 percent

Monthly payment: $842.74

Salary: $36,117.32

  • Quarterly change: -$1,061.87

Stronger declines in both rates and prices lowered the required salary figure by over $1,000 in the third quarter. If home buyers in the Cincinnati metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $36,117.32 to $41,408.21.

Mortgage rate: 3.53 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.17 percent

Home price: $170,000

  • Quarterly change: -0.18 percent
  • YOY change: +2.53 percent

Monthly payment: $875.62

Salary: $37,526.55

  • Quarterly change: -$604.67

Lower rates and nearly-stable home prices prompted the required salary to decline by about $600 in the third quarter. If home buyers in the St. Louis metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $37,526.55 to $43,214.66.

Mortgage rate: 3.61 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.17 percent

Home price: $170,817

  • Quarterly change: +4.03 percent
  • YOY change: +9.28 percent

Monthly payment: $910.78

Salary: $39,033.42

  • Quarterly change: +$491.59

Thanks to the second-highest price gain on our list for the third quarter, the required salary rose by nearly $500. If home buyers in the Detroit metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $39,033.42 to $44,778.48.

Mortgage rate: 3.54 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.17 percent

Home price: $191,500

  • Quarterly change: -0.26 percent
  • YOY change: +7.04 percent

Monthly payment: $918.98

Salary: $39,384.90

  • Quarterly change: -$707.23

Lower rates and stable home prices caused the required salary to decline by just over $700 in the third quarter. If home buyers in the Atlanta metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $39,384.90 to $45,796.98.

Mortgage rate: 3.56 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.15 percent

Home price: $235,300

  • Quarterly change: +0.26 percent
  • YOY change: +7.54 percent

Monthly payment: $1,029.68

Salary: $44,129.25

  • Quarterly change: -$586.74

Much like with the Atlanta metro, lower rates and stable prices caused the required salary figure to improve by nearly $600. If home buyers in the Phoenix metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $44,129.25 to $52,019.20.

Mortgage rate: 3.66 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.20 percent

Home price: $205,000

  • Quarterly change: +2.55 percent
  • YOY change: +15.17 percent

Monthly payment: $1,047.60

Salary: $44,897.28

  • Quarterly change: +$22.58

Despite having the lowest rates on our list, a quarterly price increase of over 2.5 percent increased the required salary by $23. If home buyers in the Tampa metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $44,897.28 to $51,820.63.

Mortgage rate: 3.54 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.17 percent

Home price: $212,300

  • Quarterly change: +0.86 percent
  • YOY change: +6.52 percent

Monthly payment: $1,127.95

Salary: $48,340.93

  • Quarterly change: -$412.05

Lower mortgage rates and a price increase of nearly 1 percent caused the required salary to decline by $412. If home buyers in the San Antonio metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $48,340.93 to $55,449.46.

Mortgage rate: 3.61 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.15 percent

Home price: $229,900

  • Quarterly change: +3.09 percent
  • YOY change: +14.21 percent

Monthly payment: $1,162.26

Salary: $49,811.12

  • Quarterly change: +$428.86

Lower mortgage rates were not enough to offset a home-price increase of 3 percent. The result was a salary increase of $429. If home buyers in the Orlando metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $49,811.12 to $57,547.65.

Mortgage rate: 3.50 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.18 percent

Home price: $240,300

  • Quarterly change: -0.87 percent
  • YOY change: +5.77 percent

Monthly payment: $1,181.38

Salary: $50,630.44

  • Quarterly change: -$1,163.36

Lower rates and prices improved the required salary figure by $1,163 during the quarter. If home buyers in the Minneapolis metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $50,630.44 to $58,653.49.

Mortgage rate: 3.58 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.17 percent

Home price: $217,400

  • Quarterly change: 0.00 percent
  • YOY change: +0.09 percent

Monthly payment: $1,203.06

Salary: $51,559.62

  • Quarterly change: -$715.06

With lower rates and absolutely no change in home price, the required salary improved by over $700 during the third quarter. If homebuyers in the Houston metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $51,559.62 to $58,859.81.

Mortgage rate: 3.57 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.16 percent

Home price: $234,800

  • Quarterly change: +1.12 percent
  • YOY change: +0.04 percent

Monthly payment: $1,239.18

Salary: $53,107.54

  • Quarterly change: -$314.33

A 1-percent increase in quarterly prices wasn't enough to quell the impact of a 16-basis-point rate decline, lowering the required salary by $314. If home buyers in the Philadelphia metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $53,107.54 to $60,986.37.

Mortgage rate: 3.61 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.15 percent

Home price: $230,500

  • Quarterly change: -0.73 percent
  • YOY change: +9.76 percent

Monthly payment: $1,255.90

Salary: $53,824.40

  • Quarterly change: -$940.09

Lower rates and prices during the third quarter prompted a substantial salary decline of $940. If home buyers in the Dallas metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $53,824.40 to $61,581.13.

Mortgage rate: 3.60 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.13 percent

Home price: $264,300

  • Quarterly change: -0.56 percent
  • YOY change: +4.76 percent

Monthly payment: $1,305.15

Salary: $55,934.98

  • Quarterly change: -$902.37

Almost  a mirror image of the Dallas metro, the Baltimore metro saw nearly the same declines to rates and prices causing the required salary to also fall by over $900 in the third quarter. If home buyers in the Baltimore metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $55,934.98 to $64,822.77.

Mortgage rate: 3.55 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.17 percent

Home price: $244,100

  • Quarterly change: -0.93 percent
  • YOY change: +6.45 percent

Monthly payment: $1,430.12

Salary: $61,290.77

  • Quarterly change: -$1,165.17

Larger rate and price declines than in the two metros before it, the Chicago area saw a required-salary reduction of $1,165 in the third quarter. If home buyers in the Chicago metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $61,290.77 to $69,469.94.

Mortgage rate: 3.61 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.18 percent

Home price: $327,000

  • Quarterly change: +1.02 percent
  • YOY change: +12.22 percent

Monthly payment: $1,510.78

Salary: $64,747.77

  • Quarterly change: -$614.86

The Sacramento metro swapped places on our list with the Miami metro thanks to a required salary difference of only $131 in the third quarter. If home buyers in the Sacramento metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $64,747.77 to $75,751.89.

Mortgage rate: 3.59 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.17 percent

Home price: $315,000

  • Quarterly change: +1.61 percent
  • YOY change: +8.62 percent

Monthly payment: $1,513.83

Salary: $64,878.54

  • Quarterly change: -$241.87

The Miami metro swapped places on our list with the Sacramento metro during the third quarter. Slightly higher home prices in the greater-Miami area were the reason why. If home buyers in the Miami metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $64,878.54 to $75,463.67.

Mortgage rate: 3.67 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.16 percent

Home price: $358,500

  • Quarterly change: +0.50 percent
  • YOY change: +12.28 percent

Monthly payment: $1,628.34

Salary: $69,786.05

  • Quarterly change: -$827.32

Thanks to falling rates and minimal price gains during the third quarter, the required salary figure fell by $827. If home buyers in the Portland metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $69,786.05 to $81,902.14.

Mortgage rate: 3.63 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.12 percent

Home price: $386,800

  • Quarterly change: -1.93 percent
  • YOY change: +9.58 percent

Monthly payment: $1,650.63

Salary: $70,741.13

  • Quarterly change: -$2,106.27

With home prices down nearly 2 percent and mortgage rates down 0.12 percent for the quarter, the required salary fell by over $2,000 in the Denver metro. If home buyers in the Denver metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $70,741.13 to $83,776.28.

Mortgage rate: 3.52 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.18 percent

Home price: $393,500

  • Quarterly change: -3.29 percent
  • YOY change: +1.73 percent

Monthly payment: $1,830.73

Salary: $78,460.06

  • Quarterly change: -$3,480.16

In addition to lower rates, the largest quarterly-price decline on our list so far caused the required salary in the D.C. metro to fall by $3,480. If home buyers in the Washington metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $78,460.06 to $91,616.93.

Mortgage rate: 3.76 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.14 percent

Home price: $422,100

  • Quarterly change: +0.38 percent
  • YOY change: +9.27 percent

Monthly payment: $1,908.06

Salary: $81,773.89

  • Quarterly change: -$896.84

Minimal price gains in the third quarter did keep affordability in check to some degree, but lower mortgage rates served to increase affordability to the tune of $897. If home buyers in the Seattle metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $81,773.89 to $96,131.62.

Mortgage rate: 3.56 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.14 percent

Home price: $397,600

  • Quarterly change: +0.56 percent
  • YOY change: +0.45 percent

Monthly payment: $1,994.72

Salary: $85,488.10

  • Quarterly change: -$727.34

Like many metros on our list, the New York metro saw lower rates and minimal price growth during the third quarter. The result is something we have seen a lot of this quarter: a required-salary reduction of approximately $700. If home buyers in the New York City metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $85,488.10 to $98,820.21.

Mortgage rate: 3.50 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.17 percent

Home price: $435,300

  • Quarterly change: -0.11 percent
  • YOY change: +3.45 percent

Monthly payment: $2,007.92

Salary: $86,053.72

  • Quarterly change: -$1,502.89

The right mix of lower rates and prices shaved over $1,500 off the required salary figure in the third quarter. If home buyers in the Boston metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $86,053.72 to $100,587.36.

Mortgage rate: 3.65 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.09 percent

Home price: $536,700

  • Quarterly change: +11.81 percent
  • YOY change: +5.90 percent

Monthly payment: $2,336.77

Salary: $100,147.44

  • Quarterly change: +$8,055.55

The Los Angeles metro had the largest quarterly-price increase on our list, pushing the median price into jumbo mortgage territory. If home buyers in the Los Angeles metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $100,147.44 to $120,847.80.

Mortgage rate: 3.78 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.06 percent

Home price: $589,300

  • Quarterly change: -0.10 percent
  • YOY change: +6.30 percent

Monthly payment: $2,535.26

Salary: $108,654.10

  • Quarterly change: -$786.87

With the smallest rate and price decline on our list, the required salary figure only improved by $787. If home buyers in the San Diego metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $108,654.10 to $131,569.10.

Mortgage rate: 3.66 percent

  • Quarterly change: -0.11 percent

Home price: $835,400

  • Quarterly change: -5.67 percent
  • YOY change: +4.98 percent

Monthly payment: $3,550.71

Salary: $152,173.42

  • Quarterly change: -$9,774.18

The king of inaffordability continues to reign. However, a strong quarterly-price decline did improve affordability by nearly $10,000. If home buyers in the San Francisco metro put 10 percent down instead of 20 percent, the required salary increases from $152,173.42 to $184,414.74.

To compile these results, HSH.com calculated the annual before-tax income required to cover the mortgage's principal, interest, tax and insurance payment. We used standard 28 percent "front-end" debt ratios and a 20 percent down payment subtracted from the median-home-price data to arrive at our figures. Loans with less than a 20 percent down payment will incur mortgage insurance, which would in turn increase the required salary and require Private Mortgage Insurance.

We utilized the NAR's 2016 third-quarter data for median home prices and our 2016 third-quarter average interest rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage to determine how much money homebuyers in 27 major metro areas would need to earn in order to purchase the median-priced home in their market.

The average mortgage rate information we used was for purchase-money mortgages made to borrowers with good to excellent credit.

We created metropolitan-area average property tax information using data made available from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS). We use 2011-2013 ACS 3-year estimates, which are the latest available data.

We used the latest available data for statewide average homeowner insurance premium costs from the Insurance Information Institute (http://www.iii.org), whose mission is to improve public understanding of insurance.

Note: Property taxes and insurance costs are specific to an individual property itself and will be different for any single property in which you may have an interest. Also, if other personal debts exceed 8 percent of one's given monthly gross income, this will increase the salary needed to qualify.

PMI costs used in our calculations are for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages. For conforming loan amounts, these are costs for FICO scores of greater than 720 but less than 759; for jumbo loan amounts, these costs are for FICO scores of 760 or greater. You can calculate mortgage insurance costs for other credit scores, down payment amounts and mortgage types using HSH.com's PMI Cost Calculator.

Data for the Pittsburgh metro area was provided by RealSTATs, a locally owned and operated real estate information company. Home-price data for Detroit was provided by Realcomp II Ltd., Michigan's largest Multiple Listing Service.

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How much salary do you need to earn in order to afford the principal, interest, taxes and insurance payments on a median-priced home in your metro area?

salary you need to earn in order to afford home in 27 metro areas
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Cities 30-Year Fixed Mortgage Rate % Change from 2Q16 Median Home Price % Change from 2Q16 Monthly Payment (PITI) Salary Needed
National 3.57% -0.16% $240,900 +0.08 $1,213.00 $51,985.83
Pittsburgh 3.49% -0.13% $140,000 -0.36 $745.79 $31,962.36
Cleveland 3.58% -0.14% $138,900 +0.58 $797.64 $34,184.64
Cincinnati 3.63% -0.16% $157,000 -2.24 $842.74 $36,117.32
St Louis 3.53% -0.17% $170,000 -0.18 $875.62 $37,526.55
Detroit 3.61% -0.17% $170,817 +4.03 $910.78 $39,033.42
Atlanta 3.54% -0.17% $191,500 -0.26 $918.98 $39,384.90
Phoenix 3.56% -0.15% $235,300 +0.26 $1,029.68 $44,129.25
Tampa 3.66% -0.20% $205,000 +2.55 $1,047.60 $44,897.28
San Antonio 3.54% -0.17% $212,300 +0.86 $1,127.95 $48,340.93
Orlando 3.61% -0.15% $229,900 +3.09 $1,162.26 $49,811.12
Minneapolis 3.50% -0.18% $240,300 -0.87 $1,181.38 $50,630.44
Houston 3.58% -0.17% $217,400 +0.00 $1,203.06 $51,559.62
Philadelphia 3.57% -0.16% $234,800 +1.12 $1,239.18 $53,107.54
Dallas 3.61% -0.15% $230,500 -0.73 $1,255.90 $53,824.40
Baltimore 3.60% -0.13% $264,300 -0.56 $1,305.15 $55,934.98
Chicago 3.55% -0.17% $244,100 -0.93 $1,430.12 $61,290.77
Sacramento 3.61% -0.18% $327,000 +1.02 $1,510.78 $64,747.77
Miami 3.59% -0.17% $315,000 +1.61 $1,513.83 $64,878.54
Portland 3.67% -0.16% $358,500 +0.50 $1,628.34 $69,786.05
Denver 3.63% -0.12% $386,800 -1.93 $1,650.63 $70,741.13
Washington 3.52% -0.18% $393,500 -3.29 $1,830.73 $78,460.06
Seattle 3.76% -0.14% $422,100 +0.38 $1,908.06 $81,773.89
New York City 3.56% -0.14% $397,600 +0.56 $1,994.72 $85,488.10
Boston 3.50% -0.17% $435,300 -0.11 $2,007.92 $86,053.72
Los Angeles 3.65% -0.09% $536,700 +11.81 $2,336.77 $100,147.44
San Diego 3.78% -0.06% $589,300 -0.10 $2,535.26 $108,654.10
San Francisco 3.66% -0.11% $835,400 -5.67 $3,550.71 $152,173.42

Comments

  1. Philip S. Moore October 24, 2016 6:13 pm

    Is there any calculation of standard deviation for these numbers? Since some of these urban areas have a vast difference between median and mean, it would be interesting to know whether the "average" is consistent with the "normal".

      Reply»  
    1. Editorial Team October 25, 2016 7:26 am

      Phillip,Thanks for all your comments. No, we do not take standard deviation into account. We can only use the data that is readily available to us: The NAR's median home prices by metro area. -Tim Manni, HSH.com

        Reply »  
  2. Oak Laurel October 22, 2016 2:47 am

    Spare a thought for us Aussies in Sydney where the median hose price is over $1 million Australian dollars. Melbourne houses are almost as expensive with a median price of over $800,000.

      Reply»  
  3. Jordan K September 21, 2016 3:06 pm

    I think the bigger issue is the assumption that the family has no student debt and has the money required to make a down payment. Even if we assume no student debt, a family making 160k in the Bay Area will, amidst ever rising rents and cost of living, have a very difficult time saving the 180k needed to put down to buy that 885k house. This needs to be more prominently addressed in order for this article to be helpful to most people.

      Reply»  
    1. Editorial Team September 22, 2016 7:49 am

      Jordan, Thanks for your comment. You're right in the sense that yes, debts are missing as part of our equation. We have no way of knowing how much debt one person has versus another. And we mention in the introduction that this is the BASE cost of owning a home, you will need to earn more to cover the total cost of owning a home. We can only work with the data that is available. Also, we provide numbers for a 10% down payment in the commentary of each slide. Given the salary break between 20% and 10%, you can assume a needed salary if you need to go down to 5%. Thanks for your comment, Tim Manni, HSH.com

        Reply »  
  4. Naomi September 20, 2016 11:34 am

    This article would be much better if you included/compared houses that you could buy at the "median" price in each city - otherwise these numbers are meaningless. A one BR walk up condo in NYC does not compare to 4BR home .. even if they are both median prices. As difficult as it may be, why don't you do the same analysis using a comparable home ..

      Reply»  
    1. Editorial Team September 22, 2016 7:56 am

      Naomi, Thanks for your comment. You're right, a 1-BR condo is NYC is not the same as a 4-BR home in Ohio. But the locations are extremely different and money buys many different things depending on where you live. We have to use the median price data from the NAR -- there is no other data. And, we compare entire metro areas, not just cities, so what you can buy in NYC vs. what you can buy on Long Island will vary greatly. Thanks for your comment, Tim Manni, HSH.com

        Reply »  
  5. Richard September 20, 2016 7:32 am

    Using the values in your table, I see that you divided monthly annual PITI (monthly PITI * 12) by 0.28 to arrive at the value for Salary Needed. Stated differently, you assume that the maximum percentage of income that should be used for PITI is 28 percent. It is wrong to assume that this value should be fixed across income. To show this, note that the household earning $32,390 in Pittsburgh has $23,320 remaining for other expenses, while the household earning $161,947 in San Francisco has $116,602 remaining for other expenses in addition to more favorable income tax deductions. Clearly, the household in San Francisco can afford to spend a somewhat higher percentage of their income on housing, and this implies that Salaries Needed at the high end of this table are somewhat inflated.

      Reply»  
    1. Editorial Team September 22, 2016 7:59 am

      Richard, Thanks for your comment. The 28% ratio we use are industry standards, the same thing any lender would calculate. Thanks for commenting, Tim Manni, HSH.com

        Reply »  
  6. Liisa Lippincott September 19, 2016 10:49 am

    What about Honolulu, Hawaii?

      Reply»  
    1. Editorial Team September 22, 2016 8:01 am

      Liisa, Up until now, we have not had metro-area mortgage rate data in Honolulu. We are considering using a national number so we can add more metros to our list. Thanks, Tim Manni, HSH.com

        Reply »  
  7. FN September 17, 2016 3:12 pm

    Next time, how about including at least one metropolitan area from EACH OF THE 50 states? You covered 4 areas just in CA here while leaving out more than half of the states in the union.

      Reply»  
    1. Editorial Team September 22, 2016 8:05 am

      FN, The reason is because, up until now, we have been using HSH's metro area mortgage rates which did not have data for all 50 states. We also compiled a list of metros based on population. We are considering using a national number so we can include more metros. Thanks for commenting, Tim Manni, HSH.com

        Reply »  
  8. Jeff September 16, 2016 9:17 pm

    I bought a house in Hillcrest (San Diego) with an income of just under $50k. Of course this was 2003 and much easier to obtain loans back then. Sold it 3 years later same condition at a $240k profit. Took that money invested and doubled over the next 3 years and used that money to repurchase the same house in cash as it had been forclosed and the price was same as i had paid in 2003. Life is good!

      Reply»  
  9. Richard September 16, 2016 12:53 pm

    These numbers seem to assume a ratio of home price to annual salary of about 4.5 - that seems rather high to me. I think most households would be really pushing their budget at that ratio. A more widely accepted ratio is 2.5-3.5. Thus, at a ratio of 3.5, the home price of 240,700 (nationwide median) would require a salary of $68,771. The home price of $885,600 in San Francisco would require a salary of $253,028.

      Reply»  
    1. Editorial Team September 22, 2016 8:10 am

      Richard, We used industry standard front and back-end ratios. Thanks for commenting, Tim Manni, HSH.com

        Reply »  
  10. B September 13, 2016 9:30 am

    Oh look! The South has been excluded again. Yes I see the Florida cities and and Atlanta. I guess that's what corporate America considers the South.

      Reply»  
    1. Rick Dykema September 21, 2016 7:16 am

      So you don't consider Texas to be in the South, B?

        Reply »  
    2. Editorial Team September 13, 2016 12:25 pm

      B: This list is based on the 27 largest metro areas, not favoritism to one region of the country over another. Thanks for your comment. Tim Manni, HSH.com.

        Reply »  

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