Report: Homes becoming more affordable despite rising prices

Midtown Oyster Bar

Nearly three-quarters of the 100 largest U.S. metros — including some of the priciest like San Jose, Calif., and San Francisco — are more affordable than this time last year, despite a continued upward swing in median home prices, according to two new research reports released today by realtor.com®.

The trends are based on realtor.com® ‘s May 2019 monthly housing trend report and REALTORS and realtor.com Affordability Distribution Curve and Score Report, which showed increasing inventory, rising wages, and declining mortgage rates have offset slowing price increases in some local areas, making a larger share of homes affordable to buyers — especially in the mid-to upper-tier price range.

Realtor.com® May data shows the U.S. median listing price continued its upward hike, increasing 6 percent year-over-year to $315,000 — a new record high. However, the 6 percent year-over-year increase in the median listing price was the slowest pace of growth since April 2015. National inventory grew by 3 percent, and homes typically spent 53 days on the market– one day less than last May.

The most dramatic change in the U.S. housing market landscape is affordability, which realtor.com® defines as the share of for-sale homes a buyer is able to afford in their market at their income. Driven by inventory growth and lower mortgage rates, 74 out of the nation’s 100 largest metros became more affordable in April 2019 compared to the previous year. This trend is a rapid acceleration from last month when only 44 metros were more affordable than the previous year.

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Compared to national trends, the 10 markets with the greatest increases in affordability were San Jose, Calif.; Des Moines, Iowa; San Francisco; Lakeland, Fla.; Atlanta; Portland, Ore.; Cape Coral, Fla.; Austin, Texas; and Dallas. These markets are distinguished by rising incomes, decreasing listing prices, and a significant increase in available homes for sale. On average, incomes grew an estimated 6 percent year-over-year, compared to the 3.5 percent increase the top 100 largest metros saw. At the same time, median home listing prices fell an average of 2 percent, and inventory increased an average of 26 percent. This compared to 4.4 percent price and 6.5 percent inventory growth in the top 100 metros.

In April, the number of homes priced above $750,000 — more than double the national median — increased 11 percent year-over-year, while the number homes priced below $200,000 decreased by 8 percent year-over-year. Similarly, increases in affordability are predominantly focused in pricier markets, especially along the West Coast. For example, San Jose, one of the nation’s most expensive metros, saw the greatest boost in affordability, but it was principally driven by improvements for 80th and 90th percentile income earners. Meaning, San Jose became more affordable compared to this time last year, but the majority of affordability increases were only felt by the area’s top income earners. 

For more information, please visit: https://www.realtor.com/research/may-2019-data

Metros With Greatest Increases in Affordability

MetroApril Affordability 
Score
YoY Affordability 
Score
May Median Listing 
Price
May Median Days 
on Market
San Jose-Sunnyvale et al, Calif.0.50.11$1,167,44428
Des Moines-West Des Moines, Iowa0.940.11$288,00059
San Francisco-Oakland et al, Calif.0.540.09$954,50028
Lakeland-Winter Haven, Fla.0.820.08$231,50064
Atlanta-Sandy Springs et al, Ga.0.80.07$335,00047
Portland-Vancouver et al, Ore.-Wash.0.590.07$474,97534
Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Fla.0.690.07$299,90091
Austin-Round Rock, Texas0.70.07$369,99546
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas0.680.06$350,00043
Charlotte-Concord et al, N.C.-S.C.0.750.06$329,45049
Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, Conn.0.560.06$754,50060
Raleigh, N.C.0.870.06$349,95045
Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Fla.0.690.06$315,00057
Madison, Wis.0.860.06$339,50040
Jackson, Miss.0.860.06$259,00071
Tampa-St. Petersburg et al, Fla.0.770.05$279,95058
Palm Bay-Melbourne et al, Fla.0.790.05$270,01861
Jacksonville, Fla.0.740.05$315,00060
Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, Ind.0.910.05$279,90045
Grand Rapids-Wyoming, Mich.0.80.05$289,90031
Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, Colo.0.680.05$511,95029
Colorado Springs, Colo.0.620.05$379,90030
Augusta-Richmond County, Ga.-S.C.0.90.05$223,22560
Salt Lake City, Utah0.70.05$436,25031
Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, Ariz.0.70.05$350,00046
Nashville-Davidson et al, Tenn.0.720.05$355,49537
Washington et al, D.C.-Va.-Md.-W.V.0.870.04$462,25034
Stockton-Lodi, Calif.0.620.04$425,47535
St. Louis, Mo.-Ill.1.080.04$229,18852
Riverside et al, Calif.0.620.04$410,45050
New Haven-Milford, Conn.0.90.04$279,90050
Minneapolis et al, Minn.-Wis.0.810.04$360,00034
Miami-Fort Lauderdale et al, Fla.0.620.04$399,00088
Deltona-Daytona Beach et al, Fla.0.620.04$294,50073
Allentown-Bethlehem et al, Pa.-N.J.10.04$222,45054
Los Angeles-Long Beach et al, Calif.0.370.04$769,50042
Springfield, Mass.0.830.04$279,00037
Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, S.C.0.840.04$269,00050
Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, Mich.0.970.04$258,25036
San Diego-Carlsbad, Calif.0.390.03$699,92531
North Port-Sarasota et al, Fla.0.660.03$359,90086
Harrisburg-Carlisle, Pa.1.070.03$219,90045
Boise City, Idaho0.640.03$369,90030
Sacramento–Roseville et al, Calif.0.570.03$493,72535
Portland-South Portland, Maine0.70.03$379,45047
Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, Md.0.960.03$334,50043
Tucson, Ariz.0.670.02$298,25052
San Antonio-New Braunfels, Texas0.680.02$295,00049
New York-Newark et al, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa.0.540.02$564,50052
Little Rock et al, Ark.1.030.02$194,90053
Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, Nev.0.720.02$319,90043
Knoxville, Tenn.0.770.02$289,90056
Hartford-West Hartford et al, Conn.0.980.02$279,90046
Fresno, Calif.0.660.02$322,50042
Durham-Chapel Hill, N.C.0.680.02$361,25043
Columbia, S.C.0.980.02$235,00053
Chicago et al, Ill.-Ind.-Wis.0.860.02$311,38642
Albuquerque, N.M.0.810.02$269,99546
Spokane-Spokane Valley, Wash.0.690.02$329,99531
Richmond, Va.0.830.02$332,05346
Wichita, Kan.0.960.01$212,45044
Virginia Beach et al, V.a-N.C.0.850.01$301,00045
Urban Honolulu, Hawaii0.520.01$694,90056
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Wash.0.510.01$627,50030
Providence-Warwick, R.I.-Mass.0.640.01$369,90044
Pittsburgh, Pa.1.050.01$197,25059
Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, Calif.0.430.01$689,47540
Memphis, Tenn.-Miss.-Ark.1.010.01$223,50044
Columbus, Ohio0.950.01$264,90035
Cincinnati, Ohio-Ky.-Ind.0.890.01$289,90043
Buffalo-Cheektowaga et al, N.Y.0.920.01$220,00036
Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Mass.-N.H.0.620.01$594,25030
Albany-Schenectady-Troy, N.Y.0.840.01$299,90064
Charleston-North Charleston, S.C.0.690.01$427,45067
Worcester, Mass.-Conn.0.850$349,00036
Toledo, Ohio1.130$166,95043
Omaha-Council Bluffs, Neb.-Iowa0.810$297,63029
Milwaukee-Waukesha et al, Wis.0.860$279,90036
Houston-The Woodlands et al, Texas0.70$324,94551
Cleveland-Elyria, Ohio1.030$190,60649
McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, Texas0.68-0.01$196,00083
Baton Rouge, La.0.93-0.01$249,90070
Youngstown-Warren et al, Ohio-Pa.1.21-0.01$124,90064
Dayton, Ohio1.15-0.01$157,74538
Akron, Ohio1.11-0.02$174,90040
Philadelphia et al, Pa.-N.J.-Del.-Md.0.92-0.02$288,95046
Winston-Salem, N.C.0.85-0.02$245,00045
Scranton–Wilkes-Barre et al, Pa.1.06-0.02$162,40067
Oklahoma City, Okla.0.87-0.02$256,50043
New Orleans-Metairie, La.0.74-0.02$292,50060
Louisville et al, Ky.-Ind.0.91-0.02$277,45043
Greensboro-High Point, N.C.0.85-0.02$245,90045
Chattanooga, Tenn.-Ga.0.77-0.03$289,70051
Birmingham-Hoover, Ala.0.96-0.03$249,00050
Rochester, N.Y.0.93-0.04$222,45031
Bakersfield, Calif.0.79-0.04$260,00043
Syracuse, N.Y.1.04-0.04$184,95051
Kansas City, Mo.-Kan.0.88-0.04$302,50040
Tulsa, Okla.0.89-0.07$239,50050
El Paso, Texas0.79-0.09$191,47568

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