Finance: The salary you need to earn to buy a home right now in the 25 biggest US cities

Despite a strong economy, homebuying affordability has decreased year-over-year due to a rise in mortgage rates and home prices.

  • Home prices across the United States have continued to rise, with 93% of metros showing sales price gains, according to the latest quarterly report from the National Association of Realtors.
  • Despite a strong economy, homebuying affordability has decreased year-over-year due to a rise in mortgage rates and home prices.
  • Buyers in the San Francisco and San Jose metro areas must earn over $200,000 a year to qualify for a mortgage with 20% down.

The United States economy may be doing great, but middle-class homebuyers are still struggling.

Home prices across the US continued to rise in the third quarter of 2018 — 93% of metros had sales-price gains, according to the latest quarterly report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

In addition, the supply of available mid-priced homes remains low and mortgage rates went up last quarter, further stifling long-term affordability for middle-class homebuyers, said NAR’s chief economist Lawrence Yun in a press release.

California is a particularly difficult market. The state is home to four of the top-five most expensive housing markets in the country and in the San Francisco and San Jose metro areas, buyers must earn over $200,000 to qualify for a mortgage with 20% down, according to NAR data. It’s no wonder Californians are fleeing to cheaper cities like Boise.

Each quarter, NAR calculates qualifying income requirements for all US metropolitan-statistical areas assuming the buyer puts 25% of gross income toward the mortgage principal and interest. The calculations are done for 5%, 10%, and 20% down payments at a 3.9% interest rate. Metro areas are based on the US Census definitions.

Below, we’ve pulled the qualifying annual income amounts for the 25 largest metros by population, ranked from lowest to highest qualifying income. Detroit and Pittsburgh are not included because of insufficient data.

25. St. Louis, Missouri

Income needed for 20% down: $37,027

Income needed for 10% down: $41,655

24. Atlanta, Georgia

Income needed for 20% down: $45,592

Income needed for 10% down: $51,291

23. San Antonio, Texas

Income needed for 20% down: $47,158

Income needed for 10% down: $53,053

22. Tampa, Florida

Income needed for 20% down: $48,013

Income needed for 10% down: $54,014

21. Houston, Texas

Income needed for 20% down: $48,9678

Income needed for 10% down: $54,975

20. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Income needed for 20% down: $48,948

Income needed for 10% down: $55,067

19. Charlotte, North Carolina

Income needed for 20% down: $49,844

Income needed for 10% down: $56,074

18. Dallas-Ft. Worth, Texas

Income needed for 20% down: $53,322

Income needed for 10% down: $59,988

17. Chicago, Illinois

Income needed for 20% down: $53,973

Income needed for 10% down: $60,720

16. Orlando, Florida

Income needed for 20% down: $54,116

Income needed for 10% down: $60,880

15. Phoenix, Arizona

Income needed for 20% down: $55,479

Income needed for 10% down: $62,414

14. Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota

Income needed for 20% down: $55,845

Income needed for 10% down: $62,826

13. Baltimore, Maryland

Income needed for 20% down: $61,216

Income needed for 10% down: $68,868

12. Miami, Florida

Income needed for 20% down: $72,222

Income needed for 10% down: $81,250

11. Riverside, California

Income needed for 20% down: $73,748

Income needed for 10% down: $82,967

10. Portland, Oregon

Income needed for 20% down: $81,235

Income needed for 10% down: $91,389

9. Sacramento, California

Income needed for 20% down: $84,683

Income needed for 10% down: $75,274

8. Washington, DC

Income needed for 20% down: $86,667

Income needed for 10% down: $97,500

7. New York-Newark-Jersey City, New York

Income needed for 20% down: $87,114

Income needed for 10% down: $98,004

6. Denver, Colorado

Income needed for 20% down: $91,570

Income needed for 10% down: $103,016

5. Boston, Massachusetts

Income needed for 20% down: $99,972

Income needed for 10% down: $112,468

4. Seattle, Washington

Income needed for 20% down: $102,291

Income needed for 10% down: $115,078

3. Los Angeles, California

Income needed for 20% down: $127,945

Income needed for 10% down: $143,938

2. San Diego, California

Income needed for 20% down: $132,238

Income needed for 10% down: $148,768

1. San Francisco, California

Income needed for 20% down: $201,205

Income needed for 10% down: $226,356

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.