California Association of Realtors says more Californians can afford homes

But homes are not getting cheaper, report warns

California Association of Realtors says more Californians can afford homes

According to the California Association of Realtors (CAR), more Californians were able to afford a home purchase in the fourth quarter than in the previous quarter.

About 28% of prospective homebuyers could afford to buy a median-priced, existing single-family home in California in the fourth quarter of 2018, up from 27% in the third quarter, according to CAR’s Traditional Housing Affordability Index (HAI). The index has stayed below 30% for six of the past quarters. It last hit a peak of 56% in the first quarter of 2012.

The index also revealed that in the fourth quarter, a potential buyer needed a minimum income of $122,340 to qualify for the purchase of an existing home at the state’s median price of $564,270. With a 20% down payment and an interest rate of 4.95%, the average payment, including mortgage, taxes and insurance, would be $3,060.

As for condominiums and townhomes, housing affordability went up to 37% in the fourth quarter from 36% in the third quarter. A Californian homebuyer needed an annual income of $99,730 to make monthly payments of $2,490 on the average condo or townhome.

Nationally, 54% of US households could afford to buy a home at the national median price of $257,600.

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