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Cities Where Housing Costs Are Becoming Less Burdensome

A recent study by Magnify Money of LendingTree, with research by the Pew Research Center, concluded residents in an average household in each of the 100 largest metros takes home more cash after paying for housing than they did three years ago.

“In other words, even though housing costs have risen over the last three years, the dollar amount of wages have grown faster and exceeded the dollar pricing increases for both renting and owning a home,” the report stated.

The report, which used data from the U.S. Census Bureau, compared local incomes to housing costs in the top 100 metros. Magnify Money then ranked them based on how much wages increased compared to housing costs.

Although California is known for its rising home prices, residents in San Francisco and San Jose retain the most incomes after paying housing costs.

Despite home prices being on the rise, First American Financial Corporation’s February Real Housing Price Index (RHPI) stated that affordability is rising in California.

Four cities—San Jose, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego—where among six whose RHPI decreased and affordability increased.

According to the Magnify Money report, San Francisco residents, annually, have $10,642 of incomes remaining, thanks in part to wages increasing by $12,706 over the past three years. San Jose was a close second, with residents having $9,909 remaining after housing costs. Wages in San Jose have increased by $12,849 over the past three years—the largest increase in the nation.

“Despite having one of the largest increases dollar-for-dollar, however, San Jose’s numbers are less impressive when comparing housing costs directly to income,” the report states. “The percentage of the city’s median gross income required to cover median housing costs fell by just 0.8% in the past three years — the smallest decrease of any city we surveyed.”

The metros of Seattle, Washington; Austin, Texas and Portland, Oregom, round out the top-five performing markets.

Residents in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Little Rock, Arkansas, have the least amount of money after housing costs, with $1,750 and $1,931 remaining annually, respectively.

About Author: Mike Albanese

A graduate of the University of Alabama, Mike Albanese has worked for news publications since 2011 in Texas and Colorado. He has built a portfolio of more than 1,000 articles, covering city government, police and crime, business, sports, and is experienced in crafting engaging features and enterprise pieces. He spent time as the sports editor for the "Pilot Point Post-Signal," and has covered the DFW Metroplex for several years. He has also assisted with sports coverage and editing duties with the "Dallas Morning News" and "Denton Record-Chronicle" over the past several years.
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