7 cities where you need to make $200,000 to afford a typical home

7 cities where you need to make $200,000 to afford a typical home


Photo: Ratnakorn Piyasirisorost (Getty Images)

Buying a home was once considered a milestone. But in many parts of the U.S. today, it seems to be getting farther and farther out of reach for many Americans.

Across the country, home buyers need to make more than $106,000 to comfortably afford a home — an 80% increase in just 4 years, according to Zillow. A typical U.S. household earns about $81,000 a year. Given the current median household income, it would take nearly 8.5 years to save up enough for a 10% down payment on a typical U.S. home.

The median home sale price in the U.S. is $432,903, a 6.1% increase from last year. On top of sky-high home prices, monthly mortgage payments have also nearly doubled since January 2020, coming out to $2,188 (assuming a 10% down payment), according to Zillow. The average rate on a 30-year-fixed mortgage has hovered around 7% for more than a month.

Within the already unfavorable housing market, there are seven cities where households need to earn more than $200,000 annually to be able to comfortably afford a home.

Take a look at which cities require the highest incomes for prospective home buyers (hint: four of them are in California), according to Zillow.

San Jose, California

San Jose, California,
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A household looking to comfortably afford a home in San Jose needs to have an income of $454,296, according to Zillow.

San Francisco

San Francisco, California.
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To be able to afford a home in San Francisco, a city that has been grappling with an ongoing housing and affordability crisis, households need an annual income of $339,864.

Los Angeles, California

Los Angeles, California.
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A household would need to make $279,250 to be able to buy a typical home in La La Land.

San Diego, California

San Diego, California.
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San Diego is the fourth-most expensive city to be able to comfortably afford a home in — and is the last of the California cities on the list. The income needed to buy a house sits at $273,613.

Seattle, Washington

Seattle, Washington.
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Moving north along the West Coast is the fifth-most expensive city to be able to afford a house. In Seattle, to easily buy a home, households need an income of $213,984.

New York, New York

New York, New York.
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Jumping cross country to the East Coast, it takes an income of $213,615 to afford a typical home in the Big Apple. New York’s metropolitan area, including parts of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, has the most million-dollar cities (those where typical home prices are upwards of $1 million).

Boston, Massachusetts

Boston, Massachusetts.
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And in Boston, a household needs an income of $205,253 to be able to comfortably afford a home.

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