In fast-growing West Coast metros, African-American and Hispanic middle-class families are virtually priced out of homeownership
Written by Nela Richardson | Redfin
Housing affordability is a growing problem for the middle class. As home prices across the nation’s 30 largest metro areas have increased by 26 percent since the market bottomed in 2012 and the median household income edged up just 1.6 percent nationally, housing affordability for the middle class has dwindled. In 2012, a family earning the area median income could afford 44 percent of the homes for sale. By 2016, the number of affordable listings declined 12 percentage points to just 32 percent.
Add to the equation that the number of homes for sale has declined by 6 percent. New construction, particularly for affordable starter homes, has failed to keep up with buyer demand. Meanwhile, rents have risen 18 percent in the past five years, making it hard for families to save for a down payment.