What Kind Of Salary Buys Your Average Home In America?

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Salary Needed To Buy Average Home In America

What does it take to move into a two-story townhouse in New York City? How much do you need to make to afford a six-bedroom colonial in Minneapolis? According to collected information from mortgage resource, HSH.com, the cost of living throughout America is wildly diverse. Looking at data from the National Association of Realtors' fourth -quarter data, HSH crunched the numbers and found which salaries can get you a median-priced home around the country.

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Atlanta, GA: $34,183

Average Home In America Salary Atlanta
  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $34,183
  • Median Home Price:  $141,900
Atlanta's housing economy was one of the hardest hit during the recession, with home prices falling 26% from 2007 until the end of 2012. While job growth has helped push housing prices into a steady incline, Atlanta homes are still some of the most affordable in the country. The most promising thing about buying a home in Atlanta? Prices are low but home-price growth is imminent.

Minneapolis, MN: $45,632

Minneapolis Average Home In America
  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $45,632
  • Median Home Price: $188,200
Minneapolis might have suffered an 11 percent increase in home prices, but the average salary you need to afford a home in this Twin City is significantly lower than most of the metro areas on this list. With high education rates and a cost of living that sits just below the national average, your dollar can go a long way in Minneapolis.

Houston, TX: $49,036

Average Home In America
  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $49,036
  • Median Home Price: $184,600
Houston is one of the more expensive cities in the state of Texas, but when compared to other metro areas of America, the salary demands of this Space City aren't astronomical. Although unemployment rates are relatively high in this city, Houston's job growth percentage of 3.8 percent is significantly higher than most of the other cities on this list. Additionally, its median household income of $58,567 is higher than the average salary needed to buy a home in this city, meaning that most residents of Houston can afford to live there (or at least buy a home).

Miami, FL: $59,734

Miami Average Home In America Salary
  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $59,734
  • Median Home Price: $259,000
Miami has recently found itself in the midst of a modern-day renaissance, and its increased home prices are evidence of that. With a slow but steady two percent growth in jobs, on top of a projected 1.8 percent increase for the upcoming year, burgeoning opportunities to make a living in this city make for reasonable home prices—at least when compared to other parts of the country.

Portland, OR: $60,307

Average Home In America Portland

  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $60,307
  • Median Home Price: $271,900
Portland has faced some of the highest home price increases in the country. This means that those looking to buy a home in this area might need to cushion their incomes. In fact, home prices have gone up five percent within the past year alone, with projected job growth at a comparable low (-0.3%). As the cost of living sits seven percent above the national average, higher salaries are needed to take residence in this environmentally-friendly city.

Seattle, WA: $73, 851

Seattle Average Home In America
  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $73, 851
  • Median Home Price: $339,900
Seattle has secured a space as one of America's most expensive cities to live. With median home prices pushing $400,000 and mortgage rates averaging at 4.59 percent, finding a decent home in this city is starting to look limited to those in the upper echelons of the middle class. Job opportunities are booming, however, with a 2.7 percent growth in 2013 and an extra 2.5 percent projected increase. Median incomes in this city are also some of the highest in the nation, thanks to the region's thriving tech industry and high education rates.

Washington, DC: $78,503

Washington DC Average Home In America
  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $78,503
  • Median Home Price: $358,900
Real estate in our nation's capital is an increasingly hot commodity. Forbes notes its home prices have gone up nine percent, with the cost of living approximately 22 percent above the national average. Though this seems dim for those looking for a home in this area, job opportunities are more accessible here, especially with a positive projection of job growth and an unemployment rate that sits just below the country's average.

Los Angeles, CA: $85,964

Los Angeles Average Home in America
  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $85,964
  • Median Home Price: $406,200
This coastal city enjoys year-round sunshine, causing a high demand for real estate. In fact, thanks to growing interest in LA homes, the housing market in the Los Angeles area has seen a six percent price increase as income growth remains relatively stagnant. With the 85k+ needed to manage a mortgage in the land of the stars, only 30 percent of L.A. County residents can actually afford a median-priced home in this town.

New York, NY: $89,788

New York Average Home In America
  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $89,788
  • Median Home Price: $388,900
Taking a bite out of the Big Apple might be a difficult thing to swallow—at least for most potential home buyers. With median home prices fluctuating in and out of the $400,000 mark, lofty salaries are needed to manage a mortgage in this town. A high unemployment rate, combined with a cost of living that exceeds the national average by almost 30 percent, means a home in this city is far from being low hanging fruit.

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San Francisco, CA: $137,129

San Francisco Average Home In America  
  • Average Salary Needed To Buy A Home: $137,129
  • Median Home Price: $679,800
It isn't news that San Francisco is home to some of the greatest tech talent in the country—and giant careers in tech mean giant salary checks for the residents of San Francisco. Yet taking part in the Bay area's wealth doesn't come without a price, and a high one at that. The cost of living here is 54.3 percent above the national average and it stands as the only city on our list to break six figures for average salary needed to afford a home. Whether you're searching for a home in Atlanta or San Francisco, it seems like prices are rising everywhere you look. But high home values aren't always a bad thing. “The positive news in both the monthly and annual rates of change in home prices over the past few months signals a possible recovery in the housing market,” said David M. Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, in a statement.
Sources: Forbes.com | HSH.com
Date of original publication:
Updated on: November 10, 2015

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