Incomes are finally outpacing housing costs in all major cities

May 20, 2019 - 2 min read

100 largest cities take home more cash

American incomes are on the rise. According to a new analysis, income growth has outpaced housing costs in all 100 of the country’s biggest cities.

Take-home cash on the rise

A new analysis from MagnifyMoney shows that incomes are finally outpacing housing cost growth. In fact, in all 100 of the nation’s largest metros, the median household has the most post-housing cash in three years.

And that’s true for both homeowners and renters.

As MagnifyMoney’s Elyssa Kirkham explains, “Compared to three years ago, the typical household in these cities has more money left over after paying for housing. In other words, even though housing costs have risen over the last three years, the dollar amount of wages have grown faster and exceeded the dollar pricing increases for both renting and owning a home.”

In San Francisco, homeowners have $12,178 more left over after housing costs, while renters have $9,982 more.

Other cities with serious post-housing gains include San Jose, California ($9,909 more per year across all households); Seattle ($7,136); Austin, Texas ($6.737); Portland, Oregon ($6,733); Denver ($6,418); Boston ($6,336); Bridgeport, Connecticut ($6,178); Nashville, Tennessee ($5,984); and Salt Lake City ($5,853).

More married homeowners are bringing in renters to cover housing costs

Improvements across the board

Even the cities with the smallest gains are still seeing serious improvement. In Albuquerque, New Mexico for example, homeowners make $2,194 more, while renters make $1,438.

“Rent costs are increasing at a faster rate than costs for households who own their own homes and still have a mortgage in every metro,” Kirkham said. “Even so, wage growth has outstripped those increases.”

The cost of homeownership versus 3, 5 and 10 years of renting

In some cities, median housing costs have actually decreased in the last three years. This occurred in Las Vegas (down $216); Detroit (-$144); Jacksonville, Florida (-$36); Atlanta (-$24); Birmingham, Alabama (-$24); and Chicago (-$24).

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Aly J. Yale
Authored By: Aly J. Yale

The Mortgage Reports contributor

Aly J. Yale is a mortgage and real estate writer based in Houston who has contributed to Forbes and worked for organizations such as <em>The Dallas Morning News</em>, PBS, NBC, and Radio Disney.