Housing Affordability Index to set snnual record for 2012
With 11 months of data reported, 2012 will go down as a record year for favorable housing affordability conditions, and a great year for buyers who could get a mortgage, according to the National Association of Realtors.
NAR's national Housing Affordability Index stood at 198.2 in November, based on the relationship between median home price, median family income and average mortgage interest rate. The higher the index, the greater the household purchasing power; recordkeeping began in 1970.
An index of 100 is defined as the point where a median-income household has exactly enough income to qualify for the purchase of a median-priced existing single-family home, assuming a 20 percent down payment and 25 percent of gross income devoted to mortgage principal and interest payments. For first-time buyers making small down payments, the affordability levels are relatively lower.
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