How High Your Salary Has to Be to Buy a House in Your City
Housing prices vary widely city by city, as anyone who has moved to the Bay Area from anywhere else in the country could tell you. A salary that could buy you a relative mansion in Phoenix might only net you a shared apartment in New York City or, frankly, part of a living room in San Francisco. So how much does it take to comfortably buy a house in your nearest metro area? The mortgage database HSH put together this handy map (spotted by Digg) that analyzes the salary needed to buy a home in different parts of the country.
Note that this map is based on the median home prices in metro areas, which includes surrounding suburbs, and assumes that you’ll have a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with a 20 percent down payment. It can't tell you what salary you'd need to buy a three-bedroom or a home near good public schools. So just because you could afford some kind of home in the New York City area on an $88,000-a-year salary doesn’t mean you can afford a brownstone in Manhattan. Knowing this, it’s even more mind-blowing that you’d need to make nearly $162,000 per year to live anywhere near San Francisco. Pittsburgh is starting to look real attractive right about now.
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