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Mortgage rates are moving again! Where are they headed? See our newest Two-Month Forecast for Mortgage Rates.

Second slide Second slide

The salary you must earn to buy a home in the 50 largest metros Updated on:

National data and all 50 metros, sorted alphabetically

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?

Metro Area30-Year Fixed Mortgage Rate% Change from 1Q19Median Home Price% Change from 1Q19Monthly Payment (PITI)Salary Needed
Kansas City4.14%-0.35%$227,000+10.52%$1,170.96$50,183.89
Las Vegas4.14%-0.35%$301,500+0.87%$1,357.58$58,181.93
Los Angeles4.14%-0.35%$567,000+3.35%$2,607.49$111,749.70
New Orleans4.14%-0.35%$228,700+11.83%$1,154.81$49,491.88
New York City4.14%-0.35%$420,800+6.10%$2,385.54$102,237.58
Oklahoma City4.14%-0.35%$162,400+8.85%$911.71$39,073.13
Riverside/San Bernardino4.14%-0.35%$380,000+4.11%$1,779.90$76,281.54
Salt Lake City4.14%-0.35%$358,000+8.03%$1,597.53$68,465.75
San Antonio4.14%-0.35%$238,800+5.43%$1,338.85$57,379.12
San Diego4.26%-0.27%$655,000+5.65%$2,970.17$127,292.88
San Francisco4.26%-0.27%$1,050,000+12.90%$4,700.05$201,430.63
San Jose4.26%-0.27%$1,330,000+9.02%$5,830.64$249,884.51
St Louis4.14%-0.35%$194,800+13.98%$1,049.14$44,963.02
Virginia Beach4.14%-0.35%$247,000+13.82%$1,220.39$52,302.47
Washington, D.C.4.14%-0.35%$456,500+8.69%$2,203.79$94,448.22
Leave a Comment

Mary September 02, 2015 7:53 am    

These mortgage payments are based on what type of downpayment? 20%? I do not see PMI incorporated and there is a higher percentage of buyers that do not have 20% to put down.

Editorial Team September 02, 2015 1:27 pm

Mary, Thanks for writing in. Yes, as the first slide explains we use 20% down because PMI costs complicate the calculations. But it's a fair point that smaller down payments are realistic options for borrowers these days. We're always looking for ways to improve this model so thanks again for your suggestion. -Tim Manni, HSH.com

Gordon August 31, 2015 11:58 pm    

Good data and a basic feel for the differences / discrepancies nationwide between markets that have been growing since the "recovery". The reponses are stimulating and entertaining. Keep up the good work!

ALan August 30, 2015 6:27 pm    

Not sure if this data really works as it excludes taxes and insurance and related maintenance expenses and simply defines 28% of income as the affordability factor. These highly variable costs from market to market have a significant impact on affordability.

Editorial Team August 31, 2015 2:30 pm

Alan, Thanks for writing in. We disagree with you that our data doesn't work because it clearly states in the intro, in slide one, and even on the final slide that this is the salary you would need to earn in order to afford the principal, interest, taxes and insurance payments... This is just the salary you need to afford those items (not including maintenance, utility bills, spending money, etc.). You are correct in that utility bills and maintenance costs will vary with the location and condition of the home. That is why we could not include them. Borrowers must be cognoscente of those costs. Think of it this way, when applying for a loan, your lender doesn't factor in your cable or cellphone bill -- they don't care if you watch HBO or have the latest iphone. Again, you're spot on with the fact that all potential borrowers need to consider all the other costs that go into owning a home besides simply the monthly payment. Thanks again for writing in, Tim Manni (HSH.com)

jim September 02, 2015 1:43 am

I'm not sure if cognoscente is the word you meant to use. I believe that cognizant would be a better choice.

Editorial Team September 02, 2015 1:15 pm

Jim, Thanks for your sharp eyes. -Tim Manni, HSH.com

Bill August 26, 2015 10:06 pm    

This is based on avg. home prices sold, which is good. However, do you have anything on new vs. used?

Editorial Team August 27, 2015 2:01 pm

Joe, Thanks for writing in. Just as a reminder, this is existing median home sales as reported by the Realtors. There are new-home sale numbers out there, but it's a national number, not broken down by metro. There is no new-vs-used comparison data that we know of. We try to utilize the best data sets that are available to us. Thanks again for writing in, Tim Manni, HSH.com

Joe August 25, 2015 9:18 pm    

Given the disparity in home size, neighborhood etc, price /sf would be a more useful comparison in this analysis.

Editorial Team August 26, 2015 3:31 pm

Joe, Thanks for writing in. As I have mentioned in other comments, we are working with the data sets that are available -- the NAR doesn't publish home price and square footage, no home price source that I know of does. And if the NAR did publish price and square footage, it would likely be median square footage. If you have a home price you would like us to calculate a salary for just let us know. Thanks, Tim Manni, HSH.com

William August 25, 2015 2:02 pm    

Charlotte is #17; above Seattle, Portland, Detroit or Denver.

Editorial Team August 25, 2015 2:10 pm

William,We are going to work on getting Charlotte in the next go round. Thanks for writing in, Tim Manni, HSH.com

mark August 25, 2015 2:45 am    

So... this article is bogus... what about what you get for your money. Tiny House... What a joke.

Editorial Team August 25, 2015 2:18 pm

Mark, Sorry to hear that you found this content "bogus." The data speaks for itself, though: it's metro area median home prices. Half the houses sold for more, half sold for less. I'm not sure where you live, but this data doesn't produce a salary for just the city, but rather the surrounding areas which define the given metro area. If you have a home price in mind we could calculate the required salary for you in hopes of making this content more actionable for you. We're happy to oblige, thanks, Tim Manni, HSH.com

budy July 22, 2015 6:58 am    

Weew.....Los Angles is fine...

usuck July 18, 2015 12:33 pm    

Put Indianapolis on your list. It's the 14th biggest city.

Elka Jaross July 17, 2015 3:28 pm    

Where are the statistics for Austin, Texas. It seemingly has the highest market but least affordable. Thank you for your answer

Editorial Team July 17, 2015 4:35 pm

Elka, thanks for your comment. We are always looking for ways to improve our salary slideshow. So far, we have examined 27 cities in the US with the highest populations. I'm not sure what you mean by "[Austin] seemingly has the highest market but least affordable." What did you mean by "highest market"? Thanks again for writing in, looking forward to hearing back from you. -Tim Manni (author)

Heather Wakefield August 25, 2015 5:30 pm

Elka is pointing out that Austin should be on your list. You state that you examined 27 cities in the US with the highest populations. Austin is the 11th largest city in the US. Many other cities with smaller populations are on your list yet you have excluded Austin.

Editorial Team August 25, 2015 6:10 pm

Heather, Thanks for writing in. We understand the point you and Elka are trying to make, but for this project we are using the largest metropolitan areas, since metro areas is what the National Association of Realtors uses to track their home prices. While Austin is the 11th largest city in the U.S., it is the 36th largest metro area. We truly appreciate your interest and we hope that we can start adding more metro areas to this slideshow. Thanks for writing, Tim

Mark June 29, 2015 10:50 am    

Very useful article