Magazine

Online Extra: The Price of Luxury


HOW WE CREATED THE INDEX

The usual affordability index tells whether a midmarket house is within the budget of a middle-income family. BusinessWeek's index, based on house-price data from Fidelity National Financial Inc., looks at the top 10% of house prices and incomes. An index value of 100 means that given prevailing mortgage rates, a family earning just enough to be in the top 10% of incomes in a metro area should be able to afford a house that is just in the top 10% of prices. Note: This is an extended, online-only version of the table in the Dec. 27, 2004 issue of BusinessWeek

For information on housing prices in cities all around the U.S., visit the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight Web site.

Luxury housing

Luxury home price

affordability index

Atlanta

330,000

212

Baltimore

569,980

113

Boston

815,000

103

Chicago

503,635

136

Cleveland

275,000

156

Denver

430,000

153

Detroit

332,150

195

Los Angeles-Long Beach

870,000

72

Miami

620,000

86

Minneapolis-St. Paul

410,450

168

Nassau-Suffolk NY

820,400

100

Newark,NJ

705,100

122

New York

750,000

91

Oakland CA

865,000

96

Orange County CA

1,150,000

66

Philadelphia

399,900

172

Phoenix-Mesa

394,740

151

Pittsburgh

248,700

220

Portland--Vancouver

375,000

171

Riverside-San Bernardino

500,000

107

San Diego

890,000

73

Seattle

564,000

117

St. Louis

325,000

193

Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater

340,000

158

Washington DC

760,200

109

San Francisco

1,342,000

79

* Third quarter 2004, in thousands of dollars

Data: Fidelity National Financial Inc., Housing & Urban Development Dept.


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