Put another feather in the “reasons now’s a good time to buy a home” cap.
According to a new realtor.com study, 81 percent of major U.S. cities have become more affordable for home buyers this year. The study — which analyzed home prices and local household income in the 100 largest metro areas — found that affordability is rising the most in mid-sized cities, particularly in the Midwest and South.
I recently wrote about how fewer U.S. homeowners are “cost-burdened” than a decade ago, and this new study further supports the notion that the value proposition for owning a home is pretty strong at the moment.
“Mortgage rates are much lower than they were, and incomes have actually grown this year for most Americans," said George Ratiu, realtor.com’s senior economist. "Those two things combined have led to an improvement in affordability for home buyers.”
While the national homeownership rate has also dropped in recent years as more people have turned to renting, we could begin to see that trend swing in the other direction if buying a home remains relatively affordable.
Affordability is rising the most in mid-sized cities, particularly in the Midwest and South. The areas tend to have strong economies and job markets and a large supply of homes on the market, realtor.com® reports. Researchers evaluated home prices and local household income in the 100 largest metro areas for the third quarter of this year. They calculated an affordability score for each metro.