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Mortgage rates again fall lower

U.S. mortgage rates again ticked down this week, according to Freddie Mac.

The 30-year fixed mortgage averaged 3.94 percent for the week ending June 1, down from 3.95 percent the previous week.

Favorable mortgage rates aided U.S. home sales, and the booming refinance market.

“In a short week following Memorial Day, the 10-year Treasury yield fell 4 basis points,” said Sean Becketti, chief economist at Freddie Mac. “The 30-year mortgage rate remained relatively flat, falling 1 basis point to 3.94 percent and once again hitting a new 2017 low.”

The historic low for 30-year rates was 3.31 percent in November 2012.

Here on the local front, home prices, including distressed sales, increased by 7.5 percent in March 2017 in the Orlando metro area compared with March 2016, according to CoreLogic.

7 things to know today and housing market nears 2006 price peak

Good morning, Orlando!

We all have been watching the Orlando-area housing market with great interest in the past year, as sales and median prices continue to increase, and inventory shrinks.

Now, a new CoreLogic report sheds some light on exactly how much activity is taking place not only here in Central Florida, but nationwide as well.

U.S. home prices are up 7.1% in March, data from analytics company CoreLogic shows. And home prices, including distressed sales, increased by 7.5%t in March 2017 in the Orlando metro area compared with March 2016.

Nationwide, home prices will increase by 4.9% year-over-year from March 2017 to March 2018, CoreLogic forecast. The property data provider said its Home Price Index is only 2.8% away from its 2006 peak. The index is expected to reach the previous peak during the second half of this year with a forecasted increase of almost 5% over the next 12 months.

Prices in more than half the country already have surpassed their previous peaks, and almost 20%t of metropolitan areas are now at their price peaks, according to CoreLogic.

Strong job gains, household formation, population growth and still-attractive mortgage rates in the face of tight inventories are fueling a continuing surge in home prices across the U.S., said Frank D. Martell, CoreLogic president and CEO..

Flash Back on Orlando Real Estate Market!

Are you ready for a real estate “flash back” from now to 10 years ago? Here are some interesting facts for you take in and contact Allyn and Pam Maycumber of Keller Williams Realty Advantage III for a detailed FREE market analysis of your home today.
 

According to the National Association of Realtors, existing-home sales took off in March 2017 to their highest pace in over 10 years, and severe supply shortages resulted in the typical home coming off the market significantly faster than in February and a year ago. Only the West saw a decline in sales activity in March.

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family , townhouses, condominiums and co-ops, ascended 4.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.71 million in March from a downward revised 5.47 million in February. March’s sales pace is 5.9 percent above a year ago and surpasses January as the strongest month of sales since February 2007 (5.79 million).

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says existing sales roared back in March and were led by hefty gains in the Northeast and Midwest. “The early returns so far this spring buying season look very promising as a rising number of households dipped their toes into the market and were successfully able to close on a home last month,” he said. “Although finding available properties to buy continues to be a strenuous task for many buyers, there was enough of a monthly increase in listings in March for sales to muster a strong gain. Sales will go up as long as inventory does.”

The median existing-home price for all housing types in March was $236,400, up 6.8 percent from March 2016 ($221,400). March’s price increase marks the 61st consecutive month of year-over-year gains.

Total housing inventory at the end of March increased 5.8 percent to 1.83 million existing homes available , but is still 6.6 percent lower than a year ago (1.96 million) and has fallen year-over-year for 22 straight months. Unsold inventory is at a 3.8-month supply at the current sales pace (unchanged from February).

Lawrence Yun also noted, “Bolstered by strong consumer confidence and underlying demand, home sales are up convincingly from a year ago nationally and in all four major regions despite the fact that buying a home has gotten more expensive over the past year.”

Properties typically stayed on the market for 34 days in March, which is down significantly from 45 days in February and 47 days a year ago. Short sales were on the market the longest at a median of 90 days in March, while foreclosures sold in 52 days and non-distressed homes took 32 days (shortest since NAR began tracking in May 2011). Forty-eight percent of homes sold in March were on the market for less than a month.

“Last month’s swift price gains and the remarkably short time a home was on the market are directly the result of the home building industry’s struggle to meet the dire need for more new homes,” said Yun. “A growing pool of all types of buyers is competing for the lackluster amount of existing homes on the market. Until we see significant and sustained multi-month increases in housing starts, prices will continue to far outpace incomes and put pressure on those trying to buy.”

According to Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage rose for the fifth straight month in March to 4.20 percent from 4.17 percent in February. The average commitment rate for all of 2016 was 3.65 percent.

First-time buyers were 32 percent of sales in March, which is unchanged from February and up from 30 percent a year ago. NAR’s 2016 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers – released in late 2016 – revealed that the annual share of first-time buyers was 35 percent.

All-cash sales were 23 percent of transactions in March, down from 27 percent in February and 25 percent a year ago. Individual investors, who account for many cash sales, purchased 15 percent of homes in March, down from 17 percent in February but up from 14 percent a year ago. Sixty-three percent of investors paid in cash in March.

Distressed sales – foreclosures and short sales – were 6 percent of sales in March, down from 7 percent in February and 8 percent a year ago. Five percent of March sales were foreclosures and 1 percent were short sales. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 16 percent below market value in March (18 percent in February), while short sales were discounted 14 percent (17 percent in February).

Single-family and Condo/Co-op Sales

Single-family home sales climbed 4.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.08 million in March from 4.87 million in February, and are now 6.1 percent above the 4.79 million pace a year ago. The median existing single-family home price was $237,800 in March, up 6.6 percent from March 2016.

Existing condominium and co-op sales increased 5.0 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 630,000 units in March, and are now 5.0 percent higher than a year ago. The median existing condo price was $224,700 in March, which is 8.0 percent above a year ago.

Regional Breakdown

March existing-home sales in the Northeast surged 10.1 percent to an annual rate of 760,000, and are now 4.1 percent above a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $260,800, which is 2.8 percent above March 2016.

In the Midwest, existing-home sales jumped 9.2 percent to an annual rate of 1.31 million in March, and are now 3.1 percent above a year ago. The median price in the Midwest was $183,000, up 6.2 percent from a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the South in March rose 3.4 percent to an annual rate of 2.42 million, and are now 8.5 percent above March 2016. The median price in the South was $210,600, up 8.6 percent from a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the West decreased 1.6 percent to an annual rate of 1.22 million in March, but are still 5.2 percent above a year ago. The median price in the West was $347,500, up 8.0 percent from March 2016.

Once again, if you would like a detailed analysis of your specific neighborhood then contact us www.WeKnowNona.com and www.WeKnowOrlando.com – call at 407-251-1314. Whether you are buying or selling it is imperative to have all the facts at your disposal to make an informed decision. Our homes are typically one of our greatest assets in our portfolio.

Home Sales Spiked in March…and Sold Fast

Inside the Release, by on April 21, 2017

An abnormally warm winter, strong consumer confidence and robust underlying demand ended up being the perfect formula to push existing-home sales in March to their highest pace in over 10 years.

More notably, despite the fact that supply is extremely tight and buying a home has gotten more expensive, home sales are up convincingly from a year ago nationally and in all four major regions.

In addition to the 4.4 percent leap in sales last month, equally impressive was the fact that typically sold 11 days faster than in February and 13 days quicker than a year ago. There’s no question that buyers are struggling to find an affordable home to buy, and when they do, they have to act very fast just to have a chance.

To reiterate what NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said during this morning’s press conference: “sales will go as far as inventory does.”

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Florida’s Housing Market Continues to Show Rising Prices in Feb. 2017

ORLANDO, Fla. – Florida’s housing market continued to report a tight supply of   and rising median prices in February, according to the latest housing data released by Florida Realtors®. Sales of single-family homes statewide remained relatively flat last month, totaling 18,033, down only 0.5 percent compared to February 2016.

“Florida’s economy is growing, with more jobs being created,” said 2017 Top Awarded Allyn Maycumber with Keller Williams Advantage in Lake Nona. “And a growing economy boosts the state’s housing sector as well. However, many local markets are reporting low inventory of for-sale homes at a time of increasing buyer demand. For sellers, it’s a good time to list their homes, as they continue to get more of their original asking price at the closing table. In February, sellers of existing single-family homes received 95.8 percent (median percentage) of their original listing price, while those selling townhouse-condo properties received 94.7 percent.

“In these kinds of market conditions, serious home buyers must be prepared to act fast, and work closely with a local Realtor to find the right home for their needs and their budget.”

The statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes last month was $225,000, up 12.5 percent from the previous year, according to data from Florida Realtors research department in partnership with local Realtor boards/associations. The statewide median price for townhouse-condo properties in February was $167,500, up 11.7 percent over the year-ago figure. February marked the 63rd month in a row that statewide median prices for both sectors rose year-over-year. The median is the midpoint; half the homes sold for more, half for less.

According to the National Association of Realtors® (NAR), the national median sales price for existing single-family homes in January 2016 was $230,400, up 7.3 percent from the previous year; the national median existing condo price was $217,400. In California, the statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes in January was $489,580; in Massachusetts, it was $330,000; in Maryland, it was $261,868; and in New York, it was $250,000.

Looking at Florida’s townhouse-condo market, statewide closed sales totaled 7,949 last month, up 4.1 percent compared to February 2016. Closed sales data reflected fewer short sales and cash-only sales last month: Short sales for townhouse-condo properties declined 39.6 percent while short sales for single-family homes also dropped 39.6 percent. Closed sales may occur from 30- to 90-plus days after sales contracts are written.

“Florida’s market for existing single-family homes in February continued to perform in line with what we’ve seen over the past year and a half,” said Florida Realtors® Chief Economist Dr. Brad O’Connor. “Due primarily to fewer distressed properties on the market, sales of single-family homes edged down. However, non-distressed sales of single-family homes were up almost 10 percent year-over-year, showing that the traditional market – as opposed to the niche distressed market – is healthy and continues to grow.

“Meanwhile, Florida’s condo and townhouse sales are off to very good start in 2017. Coming off a 6.2 percent year-over-year increase in January, condo and townhouse sales rose 4.1 percent year-over-year in February. For perspective, the last time statewide condo and townhouse sales rose on a year-over-year basis for two consecutive months was in August and September of 2015.”

For the second consecutive month, inventory remained at a tight 4.2-months’ supply in February for single-family homes, and was at a 6.4-months’ supply for townhouse-condo properties, according to Florida Realtors.

According to Freddie Mac, the interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.17 percent in February 2016, up significantly from the 3.66 percent average recorded during the same month a year earlier.

Orlando ranks No. 2 in Forbes’ fastest-growing cities list

PHOTO VIA JOE SHLABOTNIK ON FLICKR.

  • Photo via Joe Shlabotnik on Flickr.

The results are in: Orlando is one of the fastest-growing metro areas in the country.
According to Forbes, Orlando is No. 2 in the country, just behind Cape Coral, in its ranking of the country’s fastest-growing metropolitan cities.

 Every year, Forbes compiles a list of America’s fastest-growing cities in an effort to give a “holistic picture” of places on the upswing.
 The magazine uses data provided by Moody’s Analytics to compare the country’s 100 largest metropolitan statistical areas in measures such as population, employment, wages, economic output and home values, coming up with a ranking of the top 25.

cities dominate the list with nine out of 25, more than any other state. Six of those cities are included in the list’s top 10.
The Cape Coral-Fort Myers area took the top spot, with a population increase of 3.39 percent and a projected growth rate of 3.61 percent for 2017.
The Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford area ranks No. 2 on the list, but was No. 1 in job growth for 2016 at 4.57 percent. That growth is expected to decrease a bit this year however, with a projected rate of 3.54 percent.
The Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach area, Jacksonville, the North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton area, and the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater area also made the top 10.

Should you pay for a home warranty?

Orlando average price per square footPublished: February 22, 2017

If you’re going to get one, here’s how to use it correctly

If you’re in the process of buying a home, selling a home or will be in the near future, one of the costs you’re likely considering is a home warranty. But, as this is an optional expense, you have to decide if it will really be worth it to you.

“Home warranties [typically] cost between $300 and $700 a year and have a service call fee that ranges from $60 to $100, depending on the company,” Pam Maycumber of Keller Williams Realty Advantage III in Orlando, Florida.

What is a home warranty?

“A home warranty will repair or replace…covered systems and appliances when they break down from normal wear and tear,” Pam said. “Most often, home warranties cover the mechanical components of these appliances.”

Pam pointed out that these warranties are often part of a real estate transaction, but can be purchased by a homeowner at any time. However, consider the expense of that repair item. Whether it comes at the seller cost or the buyer cost having a home warranty is a terrific tool for peace of mind, and a real cost savings. Speaking from personal experience, Allyn and Pam Maycumber, point out hundreds of satisfied customers that have had a wide range of maintenance items covered by a home warranty.

Remember, if you are selling your home you can cover yourself during the listings time period AND it will cover the new home buyer for one year after their closing. Our customer in the Lake Nona area of Orlando, Florida had their home on the market . One of the air conditioning units failed, and then was replaced by the home warranty company. This covered nearly $4,000 in expenses, and when the prospective buyer knew it was a brand new unit it was a tremendous plus and allowed the seller to focus on more cosmetic touch ups to enhance the property. It was a “win WIN” situation.

Is it worth it? that depends…

For a “buyer to renew or for a homeowner to purchase their own warranty is a total waste of money,” Adriana Mollica, a Hello for Teles Properties in Beverly Hills, California, said. However, she added that it depends on the situation, as it may be “a great idea for a seller to purchase [a warranty] for a buyer when selling their property” as an added feature to sell their home.

On the flip side these warranties can be great — and save you money — when they’re used correctly.

“As long as you hold up your end of the home warranty contract by making sure your systems and appliances are clean and taken care of, when they fail from normal wear and tear, a home warranty will cover the repairs and replacements,” said Chelsea of Fidelity Title. “Even if a home warranty doesn’t cover all parts of the system or appliance that needs to be replaced, the out-of-pocket costs that a homeowner pays versus what they would pay out of pocket without a home warranty translates to huge cost savings.”

Pam relayed, for those who purchase a newly built home with new appliances, “getting a home warranty probably doesn’t make much sense as long as they are already covered under a builder warranty. She said that a “home warranty makes the most sense when you have moved into a new home and the systems and appliances have been used previously” or when you’ve had your own items for two or more years.

“Before you buy a home warranty…make sure to read through the contract,” Pam advised. “Home warranties will explain in detail which parts of their systems and appliances they cover and which they don’t within their contract. In order to get value out of a home warranty it’s vital to know and understand what the plan covers and doesn’t cover.”

Deciding what you want the warranty for

According to Allyn Maycumber, a broker associate for Keller Williams Realty Advantage III in Orlando, Florida, it’s all about perspective. If you’re looking to get a warranty that will land you brand new items if yours break, you may be severely disappointed. But if you’re using it as a safety net, you may find comfort in your warranty.

“I look at home warranties as a way to buy insurance [so] that you have time to rebuild your emergency fund after purchasing your home,” Allyn said. “It can give you peace of mind that you will have heat all winter and hot showers for a year. But it is rare that a homeowner hits the jackpot and gets a new furnace from it, although I’ve seen that. If you do get a new furnace, it is going to be similar to the old one in terms of efficiency, so that won’t save you money either.”

Paying for home repairs

Unexpected home repairs can certainly do big damage to your bank account — which is one of the reasons it’s important to regularly feed that emergency fund. If you’re faced with a pressing expense, a balance-transfer credit card, low-interest personal loan or home equity line of credit could help you cover costs (and possibly spare you some interest.

Mortgage rates climb after weeks of declines

U.S. mortgage rates rose after several weeks of declines, according to Freddie Mac.

The 30-year fixed mortgage averaged 4.19 percent for the week ending Jan. 26, an increase from 4.09 percent the previous week. A year ago, mortgage rates averaged 3.79 percent.

Favorable mortgage rates have aided U.S. home sales and have driven the refinance market.

“The 10-year Treasury yield increased more than 10 basis points this week,” said Allyn Maycumber, at Keller Williams Realty. “The 30-year mortgage rate moved up as well to 4.19 percent, a 10 basis point jump. This week marks the first increase in the mortgage rate since December 29. The 2.8 percent decline in existing home sales in December is a reminder of the lack of . According to the National Association of Realtors, supply is at its lowest level since 1999, a factor that should support higher house prices regardless of the oscillations of the mortgage rate.”

The historic low for 30-year rates was 3.31 percent in November 2012.

Orlando’s housing market: Median prices up in Dec. 2016

Central ’s housing market saw an increase in sales and median sales price in December,

Local sales of existing single-family totaled 2,822 last month, up 2.4 percent from December 2015. Statewide, sales of single-family homes totaled 22,332 last month, up 0.8 percent from December 2015.

Stateside, the housing market reported higher median prices and fewer all-cash sales in December, according to the Florida Realtors. “The trend of tight housing supply continued to have an impact on Florida’s housing market in December,” said 2017 Florida Realtors President Maria Wells, in a prepared statement. “Last month, statewide median sales prices for both single-family homes and townhouse-condo properties rose year-over-year for 61 months in row. While that’s good news for sellers, it’s continuing to put pressure on inventory for first-time homebuyers and those who may be looking for their next ‘move-up’ home.”

The median sales price for a single-family home in Central Florida was $230,000 last month, up 8.5 percent from the year-ago period, and higher than the statewide median of $226,000, which was up 9.2 percent from the previous year. For townhomes anSold house sign in Midwest suburban setting. Focus on sign.d condos, the local median sales price was $137,000 in December, up 14.2 percent from the year-ago period, and lower than the statewide median of $166,900, which was up 7.7 percent from the prior year. The median is the midpoint; half the homes sold for more, half for less.

There were 719 townhomes and condos sold last month in Central Florida, down 2.8 percent from the year-ago period; and 8,673 townhomes and condos sold statewide in December, down 5.2 percent when compared to December 2015.

The national median sales price for existing single-family homes in November 2016 was $236,500, up 6.8 percent from the prior year; and the national median existing condo price was $222,600, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Closed sales data for Florida showed fewer short sales and cash-only sales last month: Short sales for townhouse-condo properties fell 45 percent, while short sales for single-family homes declined by 39.2 percent. Closed sales may occur from 30- to 90-plus days after sales contracts are written.

Buying More Affordable than Renting in 66 Percent of U.S. Housing Markets

IRVINE, Calif. – Jan. 5, 2017 —  Rental Affordability Report, which shows that buying a home is more affordable than renting in 66 percent of U.S. housing markets analyzed for the report.

The analysis incorporated recently released fair market rent data for 2017 from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, wage data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics along with public record sales deed data from RealtyTrac in 540 counties with at least 900 home sales in 2016 (see full methodology below).

“While buying continues to be more affordable than renting in the majority of U.S. markets, that equation could change quickly if mortgage rates keep rising in 2017,” said Daren Blomquist, senior vice president with ATTOM Data Solutions, the new parent company of RealtyTrac. “In that scenario, renters who have not yet made the leap to homeownership will find it even more difficult to make that leap this year. Additionally, renting may end up being the lesser of two housing affordability evils in a growing number of high-priced markets.”



Markets more affordable to buy than to rent

Counter to the overall trend, renting is more affordable than buying a home— including mortgage, property taxes and insurance — is more affordable than the fair market rent on a three-bedroom property in 354 of the 540 counties analyzed in the report (66 percent).

Among the nation’s most populous counties, those where it is more affordable to buy than to rent are Cook County (Chicago), Illinois, Maricopa County (Phoenix), Arizona, Miami-Dade County, Florida; San Bernardino County, California in inland Southern California; Clark County (Las Vegas), Nevada; Tarrant County, Texas in the Dallas metro area; Wayne County (Detroit), Michigan; Broward County, Florida in the Miami metro area; Bexar County (San Antonio), Texas; and Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania.

Markets more affordable to rent than to buy

Counter to the overall trend, renting is more affordable than buying a home in 186 of the 540 counties analyzed for the report (34 percent), including Los Angeles County, California; Harris County (Houston), Texas; San Diego County, California; Orange County, California; Kings County (Brooklyn), New York; Dallas County, Texas; Queens County, New York; Riverside County, California in the inland area of Southern California; King County (Seattle), Washington; and Santa Clara County (San Jose), California.

Least affordable rental markets

On average across the 540 counties analyzed, monthly fair market rent on a three-bedroom property in 2017 will require 38.6 percent of average wages, while a monthly house payment on a median-priced home (including mortgage, property taxes and insurance) requires 36.6 percent of average wages across the 540 counties on average.

The least affordable rental markets requiring the highest percentage of average wages to pay fair market rent in 2017 are Marin County, California in the San Francisco metro area (77.3 percent); Spotsylvania County, Virginia in the Washington, D.C. metro area (73.7 percent); Monroe County (Key West), Florida (72.2 percent); Honolulu County, Hawaii (70.7 percent); and Maui County, Hawaii (70.6 percent).

There were a total of 55 counties where the average fair market rent on a three-bedroom property in 2017 will require more than 50 percent of average wages, including Kings, Queens, Suffolk, Bronx and Nassau counties in the New York metro area; Contra Costa and Alameda counties in the San Francisco metro area; and Orange and San Diego counties in Southern California.

Most affordable rental markets

The most affordable rental markets requiring the lowest percentage of average wages to pay fair market rent in 2017 are Madison County (Huntsville), Alabama (23.9 percent); Allegheny County (Pittsburgh), Pennsylvania (24.4 percent); Fulton County (Atlanta), Georgia (24.8 percent); Anderson County (Knoxville), Tennessee (25.1 percent); and Rock Island County, Illinois (25.3 percent).

There were a total of 75 counties where the average fair market rent on a three-bedroom property in 2017 will require less than 30 percent of average wages, including Cuyahoga County (Cleveland), Ohio; Harris County (Houston), Texas; Oakland and Wayne counties in the Detroit metro area; Franklin County (Columbus), Ohio; New York County (Manhattan), New York; and Dallas County, Texas.

Rents and home prices rising faster than wages in majority of markets

On average across the 540 counties analyzed for the report, fair market rents for three-bedroom properties in 2017 are rising 4.2 percent compared to 2016 while median home prices in 2016 were up 5.7 percent from a year ago and average wages were up 2.2 percent from a year ago in the second quarter of 2016 (the most recent wage data available).

Fair market rents are rising faster than average wages in 337 of the 540 counties analyzed (62 percent), including Los Angeles County, California; Cook County (Chicago), Illinois; Harris County (Houston), Texas; Maricopa County (Phoenix), Arizona; and San Diego County, California.

Counter the national trend, average wage growth is outpacing growth in fair market rents in 203 of the 540 counties analyzed (38 percent), including Queens County, New York; San Bernardino County, California in inland Southern California; Clark County (Las Vegas), Nevada; King County (Seattle), Washington; and Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania.

Median home prices in 2016 rose faster than average wages in 427 of the 540 counties analyzed (79 percent), including Los Angeles County, California; Cook County (Chicago), Illinois; Harris County (Houston), Texas; Maricopa County (Phoenix), Arizona; and San Diego County, California.

Counter to the national trend, average wage growth outpaced home price appreciation in 113 of the 540 markets analyzed (21 percent), including Santa Clara County (San Jose), California; Suffolk and Nassau counties (Long Island), New York; Saint Louis County, Missouri; and Montgomery County, Maryland in the Washington, D.C. metro area.

Rents rising faster than home prices in 37 percent of markets

Median home prices are rising faster than fair market rents in 340 of the 540 counties analyzed (63 percent), including Los Angeles County, California; Cook County (Chicago), Illinois; Harris County (Houston), Texas; Maricopa County (Phoenix), Arizona; and Miami-Dade County, Florida.

Counter to the national trend, fair market rents are rising faster than median home prices in 200 of the 540 counties analyzed (37 percent), including San Diego County, California; Orange County, California; Dallas County, Texas; Santa Clara County (San Jose), California; and Alameda County, California in the San Francisco metro area.

Best and Worst Rental Markets for Millennials

Out of 25 counties where the share of the millennial home buying population (born between 1979 and 1993) represented at least 30 percent of the total population in 2014, the most affordable rental markets were Ingham County (Lansing), Michigan (28.3 percent of wages to rent a three-bedroom property); New York County (Manhattan), New York (28.4 percent); Champaign County (Champaign), Illinois (30.0 percent); Cass County (Fargo), North Dakota (30.9 percent); and Richmond City, Virginia (30.9 percent).

Among those same 25 counties, the least affordable rental markets were Hays County (Austin), Texas (55.6 percent); Onslow County (Jacksonville), North Carolina (48.5 percent); Brazos County (College Station), Texas (41.6 percent); Missoula County (Missoula), Montana (41.4 percent); and Coconino County (Flagstaff), Arizona (40.9 percent).

Methodology
For this report, ATTOM Data Solutions looked at 50th percentile average rental data for three-bedroom properties in 2017 from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, along with Q2 2016 average weekly wage data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (most recent available) and 2016 year-to-date home price data from ATTOM Data Solutions publicly recorded sales deed data in 540 counties nationwide.

Rental affordability is average fair market rent for a three-bedroom property as a percentage of the average monthly wage (based on average weekly wages). Home buying affordability is the monthly house payment for a median-priced home (based on a 3 percent down payment and including mortgage, property tax, homeowner’s insurance and private mortgage insurance) as a percentage of the average monthly wage.