By now we all know that New York City's housing market is one of the country's—not to mention the world's—most expensive, so when we saw that financial website NerdWallet ranked its affordability 92 out of 100 (100 being the least affordable), we weren't exactly surprised. (Note: San Francisco is actually less affordable than our fair city is, ranking 95th.)
What's cool about this particular study is that it also calculates how large of a house an average family could comfortably afford in each area. That number is based on data on debt, income, taxes, housing costs and home prices.
In an area defined as New York, Newark and Jersey City, the median family income is $104,685., which translates to, when calculating how much you can afford, a suggested home price is $314,177—obviously low if you're talking about NYC. The number of square feet you'll get for that: 1,243. For the median income in San Francisco (around $120,000), you'll get just over 1,000 square feet. (NY:1, SF: 0.)
Now, by contrast, in the Chicago area, the median family income is lower at $93,163, but the suggested home price—$293,626—gets you almost double the amount of square feet.
Other interesting takeaways from the study:
- Ohio is by far the most affordable state when it comes to the amount of square feet a family can afford.
- California and Florida are the least affordable states.
- The most affordable metro area is Indianapolis, Indiana, where, for the median income of around $81,000, a family can afford over 5,000 square feet (!).
- The most expensive metro area in the country is McAllen-Edinburg-Mission in Texas, where the median family income—$47,545—will only get you around 700 square feet.