The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) estimates that 55 million families, or half of all U.S. households, can afford today’s $200,000 median-priced new homes, thanks to record low mortgage rates and declining home prices. That’s an increase of 17 million households from two years ago.
Using data from the U.S. Census Bureau, NAHB compared home prices, mortgage rates and minimum income needed to purchase a median-priced home in February 2007 and February 2009. A typical household today can afford to purchase a home with $20,000 less income and still save nearly $500 per month on their housing expenses, including principal, interest, taxes and insurance. NAHB estimates that 55.4 million households can afford to purchase a home today compared with 38.4 million two years ago.