Do You Make Enough to Own a Home in One of America's Largest Cities?
As the cost of living continues to rise, owning a home in the city is becoming an unobtainable dream for many urbanites. But exactly how expensive would it be to wave goodbye to landlords and rent checks and purchase a place of your own? Personal finance website SmartAsset used Census Bureau data to determine the minimum salary needed to afford a home in America’s largest cities, CNBC reports.
After gathering data on median home values for 2016, SmartAsset ran the numbers through their mortgage calculator to see what monthly home payments would look like in each city. For the purposes of the study, they assumed homeowners would start debt-free, make a 20 percent down payment on their house, take out a 30-year mortgage worth 80 percent of the home value, and pay 4 percent interest and 0.5 percent homeowner’s insurance.
California is the priciest locale for urban homeowners by far, with cities in that state accounting for four of the top five spots on the list. In San Francisco, where the median home value is over $1 million, you need to take home an annual salary of at least $164,666 before you can consider buying a house. In San Jose, California, the minimum salary for homeowners is $131,503, and in New York City it’s $111,662.
But owning a home in the city on a more humble salary isn’t impossible. In Indianapolis, the cheapest of the 15 cities, the median home value is $128,000, and the minimum income to buy a home is $21,955. Above that is Philadelphia, where you can get by as a homeowner on just $25,906 a year. Homes in San Antonio, Texas; Jacksonville, Florida; and Columbus, Ohio are all cheap enough to purchase with salaries of less than $30,000.
You can check out the full list of cities and salaries below.
1. San Francisco, CA // $164,666
2. San Jose, CA // $131,503
3. New York, NY // $111,662
4. Los Angeles, CA // $97,292
5. San Diego, CA // $97,292
6. Austin, TX // $60,875
7. Chicago, IL // $48,384
8. Phoenix, AZ // $35,022
9. Houston, TX // $33,641
10. Dallas, TX // $33,641
11. Columbus, OH // $28,013
12. Jacksonville, FL // $26,990
13. San Antonio, TX // $26,914
14. Philadelphia, PA // $25,906
15. Indianapolis, IN // $21,955