College Station is the hardest place to buy a home in Texas; Wichita Falls comes out on top

In a new study on housing affordability in the U.S., the MagnifyMoney team found it would take the average American worker more than six years to save enough to buy a home today.

Texas towns are among the most affordable places in the U.S. for first-time homebuyers, according to our analysis.

In our study, we analyzed median listing prices for homes in 380 metro areas and median annual household income levels. Then, we crunched the numbers to find out how much workers would need to save in order to afford all the upfront costs of homeownership — a 20% down payment, 4.5% closing costs, and a small emergency savings fund (equal to one month’s mortgage payment).

In the 24 major Texas metros we analyzed, we found it would take on average 5.4 years for the median-earning worker to save up enough for a new home.

But one metro area — College Station — stood out as significantly unaffordable. A median-earning worker in College Station would need more than 11 years to save enough for a new home, roughly twice as long as every other metro in the state.

The reason? Blame high home values and comparatively low household earnings. The median-earning household in College Station earns just $39,915 in annual income, while the median listing price for homes is $249,000. On that salary, a worker could only reasonably expect to qualify for a mortgage loan of $171,057 — hardly enough to cover the cost of a typical home.

Fortunately, for the most part, homeownership is within reach across most of the state.

Here are the 10 most affordable metros in Texas:

#10 Amarillo

Median household income: $49,553

Median listing price: $190,000

Years needed to save: 4.81

 

#9 El Paso

Median household income: $40,699

Median listing price: $156,000

Years needed to save: 4.79

 

#8 Sherman-Denison

Median household income: $47,631

Median listing price: $178,750

Years needed to save: 4.71

 

#7 Abilene

Median household income: $44,249

Median listing price: $160,000

Years needed to save: 4.54

 

#6 Midland

Median household income: $66,689

Median listing price: $239,500

Years needed to save: 4.52

 

#5 Odessa

Median household income: $54,903

Median listing price: $185,850

Years needed to save: 4.27

 

#4 Beaumont-Port Arthur

Median household income: $44,845

Median listing price: $149,900

Years needed to save: 4.20

 

#3 Texarkana, TX-AR

Median household income: $41,818

Median listing price: $130,000

Years needed to save: 3.92

 

#2 Killeen Temple

Median household income: $50,671

Median listing price: $155,500

Years needed to save: 3.87

 

#1 Wichita Falls

Median household income: $45,892

Median listing price: $117,100

Years needed to save: 3.24

Use this calculator to see how long it would take you to save for a home.

 

MagnifyMoney is a price comparison and financial education website, founded by former bankers who use their knowledge of how the system works to help you save money.


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