New report ranks Austin among least affordable cities for buyers

A new real estate report shows how much housing the average household can afford in the country’s 50 largest cities, and, unsurprisingly, Austin is at the bottom of the list.

The capital ranks 36th out of 50 in SmartAssets 2020 edition of “Where the average household can afford the most and the least home”.

The finance website used the median household income in each city and the average non-mortgage debt in each state to estimate how much home the average household can afford. This number was then compared to the area’s median house value to determine affordability.

With a local median household income of $ 75,413 and an average Texas no-mortgage loan of $ 27,193, SmartAsset reports that the average Austin household can afford a home priced at $ 317,000.

However, according to the 2019 annual American community survey by the Census Bureau, the median home value in the region is $ 378,300, which means the median price home is not within reach. The study shows this as an affordability rate of 83.8 percent.

Austin is the least affordable of the seven cities in Texas included in the study. El Paso ranks 9th in the US with an affordability rate of 133.23 percent. Fort Worth (# 13) and San Antonio (# 14) are right behind with ratios of 122.73 percent and 121.57 percent, respectively. Arlington ranks 20th (112.25 percent), and Houston 28th has an affordability rate just over 100 percent.

Dallas, # 30, is the only other city in Texas where median home prices are out of reach for the average household. There, the median income of $ 55,332 and average debt of $ 27,193 equals a house priced at $ 215,000. However, the average home value is $ 231,400, which equates to an affordability rate of 92.91 percent.

The least affordable place in the United States is New York City, where the average household can only afford 42.45 percent of the median home value.

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