Santa Cruz Housing Entry-Level Affordabilty – Up 67%

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Hey, feeling like maybe now you might possibly be able to consider buying a house in Santa Cruz? You are not alone! According to our good friends at the California Association of Realtors (C.A.R.), housing affordability has increased 50% in the second quarter of 2008 as compared to the second quarter of 2007. Slammin’!

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You may not have known this (I sure didn’t!), but C.A.R. has a First Time Buyer Housing Affordability Index (FTB-HAI). The C.A.R. report breaks it down county-by-county, and reports this as the Santa Cruz county:

Q2 2007: 18

Q1 2008: 28

Q2 2008: 30

So since Q2 2007, Santa Cruz county has soared 12 points – that’s 67%! I don’t know why so many Realtors are quittin’ the business with numbers like this. New buyers are, quite literally, streaming into the market. Oh, wait – maybe it has to do with the reduced pay packet. C.A.R. also goes on to report that the median entry-level priced home is going for $531,250 – and that’s a steep drop from what homes used to be going for ($750K+). I guess it’s hard to keep gas in the Mercedes with home prices like that.

In case you’re curious, C.A.R. also figures that a home costing $531,250 is going to cost a buyer $3,380 per month including principal, interest, tax, and insurance (PITI) – assuming a 10% down payment (check under your mattress for that $53,000 you have lying around). They also figure you need to make $101,490 to qualify for such a loan.

Actually, that doesn’t sound too bad – especially when you consider that there’s lots of homes going for a fair sight less than $531,250 in Santa Cruz these days. And the good news is, these prices are still dropping in many areas – it’ll be interesting to see where Santa Cruz county sits in next quarter’s affordability index.

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