Nationwide housing affordability held near historic highs in the first quarter of 2013, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI), at 73.7 percent, down slightly from 74.9 percent in the final quarter of 2012.
The HOI is the share of new and existing homes sold in a quarter affordable to a family earning the median income. An HOI of 73.7 means that 73.7 percent of all homes sold in the first three months of 2013 were affordable to families earning the national median income ($64,400).
This was the third consecutive quarter in which Ogden-Clearfield hit the top of the affordability chart for major markets. There, 93.4 percent of all new and existing homes sold in this year’s first quarter were affordable to families earning the area’s median income of $70,800 – essentially unchanged from the 93.7 percent of homes affordable to median-income earners at year-end 2012.
Among smaller housing markets, Mansfield, Ohio, claimed the “most affordable” title this time around, with 97.5 percent of homes sold in the first quarter being affordable to those earning the median income of $54,600.
This was the second consecutive quarter in which the San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City, Calif. metro area hit the bottom of the affordability chart for major markets. There, just 28.9 percent of homes sold in the first quarter were affordable to families earning the area’s median income of $102,000.
The least affordable small housing market in the first quarter was Santa Cruz-Watsonville, Calif., where 37.1 percent of all new and existing homes sold were affordable to those earning the area’s median family income of $73,800.