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I pretty much summarize every article Richard Florida writes on CityLab, so I might as well go ahead and summarize this one too. This is about “How Many Years Of Income It Takes To Buy A Home In Various U.S. Cities,” so in some ways it’s like this post. This stuff is relevant to me because part of the reason my wife and I were comfortable deciding to move to Texas was the idea that it would be easier to get a house eventually (as opposed to living in the Northeast, etc.) Also, U.S. residents are going to spend $10 trillion (with a T) on housing over the next decade or so. That’s an insane amount of money; might explain why the construction industry is happier than most.
So, let’s dive into this, shall we?
Here are the places in the U.S. where it would take you the least amount of years (of income) to buy a home:
Lot of Midwest and lower Midwest on there, for sure — but at the same time, none of these places (save maybe Topeka or Youngstown or Flint) are major “cities,” and as we all know, millennials are going to flock to the cities. THE SUBURBS ARE DEAD!
So let’s look at cities of over 1 million people. Where would it take you the least amount of time to buy a home?
Alright, so the flip side of that … what cities would it take you the MOST amount of income years to buy a home?
Notice anything? They’re all coastal, pretty much. Uh-huh.
All this data above is about married couples buying a house. Generally speaking, that’s two incomes. What about single people? (If you don’t care about housing prices and just want to get laid, move to Colorado Springs.)
Here are the good deal cities for singles:
Lot of overlap with the married data for least years above. Houston, TX truly is America’s economic miracle, FYI.
Here are the cities that are bum-deals for single people who want to own a home:
Think about all this along these lines, right? For most people (the rank-and-file of life among us), the biggest purchase you ever make likely involves a home. So this is some real quality-of-life-and-what-your-income-is-doing-for-you stuff right here. And in that regard, there really are two Americas (or even 3-4) in terms of how far your money can/will go.