In the midst of median list prices now coming in at $300,000, mortgage loans growing +19.7% over the past five years* and household incomes increasing only 10% in the past five years*, there are still cities in the country where people can have 30-year fixed rate monthly mortgages on single-family homes for $1,000 or less.

Most of these “bargain cities” live in the Rust Belt and South. Most of the homes in these bargain cities are more affordable due to high job loss rates, lower household incomes and higher inventories. According to Todd Teta, chief product officer with ATTOM Data Solutions, “Right now, the Rust Belt area and parts of the South are where home buyers will get the biggest bang for the buck. Stay away from the West Coast, where home prices are not showing too many signs of slowing down.”

Realtor.com went about finding the ten best bargain cities among the country’s 200 largest metro areas. In its analysis, realtor.com included such factors as a 10% down payment, 4.55% mortgage interest rate, 0.5% of home value in private mortgage interest payments, $40. for each $100,000 in home value for home insurance payment and factoring a 1% of home value towards annual home maintenance. It did not include property taxes.

Here are realtor.com’s top ten bargain cities:

  1. Youngstown OH – median list price of $121,800
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 63.7%
    2. 30% of buyers here are under 30, according to a recent com study
  2. Peoria IL – median list price of $136,500
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 61.2%
    2. Can buy historic home with front porch for $80,000
    3. Renting can cost $1,000 – $1,200
    4. Ryan Cannon, agent with RE/MAX Traders Unlimited, said, “It’s a no-brainer to buy.”
  3. Binghamton NY – median list price of $130,000
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 61.1%
    2. Cape Cod and ranch homes available for under $150.000
    3. Lots of 20-something buyers
  4. Huntington WV – median list price of $143,300
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 58.2%
    2. com ranked it as one of best [places to buy a starter home
    3. 1930’s brick Cape Cod homes near downtown available for under $140,000 plus log cabins in woods off the grid available for under $100,000
  5. Davenport IA – median list price of $145,100
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 56.2%
    2. Numerous white AND blue collar jobs
    3. Century old 4 bedroom homes under $80,000
    4. One of highest concentrations of properties listed on National Register of Historic Places, according to com
  6. Lynchburg VA – median list price of $150,000
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 54.7%
    2. Foothills of Blue Ridge Mountains plus Liberty University and University of Lynchburg
    3. Lots of postwar bungalow and Cape Cod homes within city limits available under $120,000
  7. Erie PA – median list price of $155,100
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 52.3%
    2. “Lake town” with boat harbor and sandy beaches on Lake Erie
    3. Three bedrooms plus garage for $130,000
  8. Fort Smith AR – median list price of $160,400
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 50.4%
    2. Home prices -56% than Fayetteville and -17% that Little Rock
    3. According to ATTOM Data Solutions, lowest property taxes with average rate of 0.8% of home value
    4. 56% of population lives below poverty line
  9. Mobile AL – median list price of $179,800
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 45.4%
    2. Large homes from antebellum days near Midtown Historic District available for $160,000
    3. Visitors stay in Airbnbs and then decide to buy
  10. Macon GA – median list price of $173,800
    1. Share of homes with $1,000/month or less mortgage payments – 45.2%
    2. Unlike other places in South, newly built 4-bedroom, 3-bathroon homes available for under $150,000 in sprawling suburbs
    3. One hour from Atlanta where home prices nearly double
    4. Median list prices in this metro have increased +15.4% y/y due to new services and amenities

Realtor.com determined that the price point to obtain a mortgage under $1,000 is $162,000 or less.

 

  • analysis by com of data from Optimal Blue Mortgage
  • data tracked by US Census Bureau

 

Thanks to Lance Lambert with realtor.com for original story appearing in Inman News