Most Homes For-Sale are Unaffordable to Most People

Affordability continues to be a serious constraint for prospective home buyers.  One way to find out buyers’ perception about this issue is to ask them to estimate the share of all homes for-sale in their markets they are able to afford.  A strong majority of 79% say they can afford fewer than half of the homes available.  This in turn means that only 21% of buyers believe they could buy most any home for-sale in their markets.  These findings come from NAHB’s Housing Trends Report (HTR)* for the third quarter of 2018.

A substantial majority of Millennial home buyers – 80% – estimate they can afford fewer than half the homes for-sale in their areas. The share is not much better among Gen X’ers (79%) or Boomers (75%).

What Share of all Homes Currently For-Sale in Your Market is Affordable to You?
(Percent of Prospective Home Buyers)

Share Who Can Afford Fewer than Half the Homes For-Sale By Generation
(Percent of Prospective Home Buyers)

* The Housing Trends Report (HTR) is a research product created by the NAHB Economics team with the goal of measuring prospective home buyers’ perceptions about the availability and affordability of homes for-sale in their markets. The HTR is produced quarterly to track changes in buyers’ perceptions over time.  All data are derived from national polls of representative samples of American adults conducted for NAHB by Morning Consult.  Results are not seasonally adjusted due to the short time horizon of the series, and therefore caution is advised when interpreting trends or comparing time periods.  A description of the poll’s methodology and sample characteristics can be found here. This is the third in a series of posts highlighting results for the third quarter of 2018.  See previous posts on plans to buy and housing availability.



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2 replies

  1. Homes are getting extremely expensive nowadays

    • It is better to buy less house, so you aren’t house poor. Buy smaller in the best neighborhood, stay for a couple of years, build equity so you can upgrade to a larger home. You can look for State Housing Programs, such as VHDA or others that assist with Down payment money.

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