With 74% of US county markets being unaffordable for average wage earners to buy a median priced home, which counties are the most affordable? Which counties are the most unaffordable?

ATTOM Data Solutions just released 2019 US Home Affordability Report can tell us.

Let’s begin with the basics.

  • The national median priced home in Q3 2019 = $265,000
  • The annual gross income earned by the average wage earner in Q3 2019 = $57,594
  • The annual gross income for a buyer putting down a 3$ down payment in Q3 2019 = $69,256 

Largest Populated Counties That NOT Affordable in Q3 2019

Los Angeles County CA

Clark County (Chicago) IL

Maricopa County (Phoenix) AZ

San Diego CA

Orange County CA

King County WA

Tarrant County TX

Santa Clara County CA

New York County NY

Alameda County CA

Still Affordable Counties for Average Wage Earners

Harris County (Houston) TX

Wayne County (Detroit) MI

Philadelphia County PA

Cuyahoga County (Cleveland) OH

Allegheny County (Pittsburgh) PA

Mecklenburg County NC

Fulton County GA

St. Louis County MO

Milwaukee County WI

Mann County IN

33% of counties analyzed, or 163 of 498 counties, required LESS than 30% of annualized weekly wages to buy in a median priced home in Q3 2019.

Counties Requiring the Smallest Share of Weekly Wages

Calhoun County (Battle Creek) MI             14.1%

Wayne County (Detroit) MI                        14.9%

Clayton County (Atlanta) GA                      15.2%

Rock Island County (Davenport) IL             15.5%

Montgomery County AL                              16.2%

According to Todd Teta, ATTOM’s chief economist, “Buying a home continues to be a rough road for the average wage earner in the United States. Prices are going up substantially faster than earning in 2019 without any immediate end in sight, which continues to make home ownership difficult or impossible for a majority of single-income households and even for many families with two incomes. If there is any silver lining to the picture, it is that mortgage rates have fallen back to historical lows. That is softening the blow of rising prices and actually making homeownership a bit more attainable in most areas of the country.”

Also read: https://timandjulieharris.com/2019/09/29/typical-mortgage-payment-dipping-below-2018-levels.html,