Nationwide housing affordability hit a new record high for a second consecutive quarter in the first three months of this year, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI), released today. The latest HOI data reveal that 77.5% of all new and existing homes that were sold in this year’s first quarter were affordable to families earning the national median income of $65,000. This beats the previous record set in the final quarter of 2011, when 75.9% of homes sold were affordable to median-income earners.
The most affordable major housing market in this year’s first quarter was Indianapolis-Carmel, Ind., where 95.8% of homes sold during the
period were affordable to households earning the area’s median family income of $66,900.
Also ranking among the most affordable major housing markets in respective order were Dayton, Ohio; Lakeland-Winter Haven, Fla.; Modesto, Calif.; Grand Rapids-Wyoming, Mich.; and Buffalo-Niagara Falls, N.Y.; the latter two of which tied for fifth place. Among smaller housing markets, Cumberland, Md.-W.Va. topped the affordability chart for the first time in this year’s first quarter. There, 99% of homes sold during the first quarter were affordable to families earning the area’s median income of $53,000. Other smaller housing markets at the top of the index include Fairbanks, Alaska; Wheeling, W.Va.; Kokomo, Ind.; and Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, Iowa-Ill., respectively.