Dallas Area Homes Become More Affordable

Posted by Emily Ray-Porter Group on Tuesday, February 24th, 2009 at 12:04pm.

Dallas-area homes have become more affordable, report says

10:42 PM CST on Thursday, February 19, 2009

By STEVE BROWN / The Dallas Morning News
stevebrown@dallasnews.com

Falling home prices and mortgage rates have made Dallas-Fort Worth even more affordable for residential buyers.

At the end of 2008, more than 67 percent of the homes sold in the D-FW area were affordable for residents earning the area's median family income, according to a new report by the National Association of Home Builders.

That's the D-FW area's highest affordability ranking in four years.

By comparison, about 62 percent of U.S. homes sold in the final quarter of 2008 were considered affordable to U.S. families with a median income of $61,500, said the quarterly report, which was released Thursday.

"Falling home prices and very favorable mortgage rates both contributed to the housing affordability gains we saw in the fourth quarter of 2008," said association chairman Joe Robson, a builder from Tulsa, Okla. "However, at the same time, worsening economic conditions, historically low consumer confidence and uncertainty about future home prices kept many qualified buyers on the sidelines."

The D-FW area ranked 112th in terms of home affordability out of the 222 U.S. markets in the builders' year-end 2008 report.

In Texas, Fort Worth was ranked the most affordable homebuying market in the fourth quarter – 79 percent of median income households could afford to purchase.

The most expensive Texas big city market was El Paso, where only 33.9 percent of housing purchases were affordable in the fourth quarter.

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