Industry News

Many Californians locked out of home ownership

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Home prices have outpaced household income throughout California, and in 14 counties the median income needed to purchase a median-priced home is more than double the median household income, according to a report released today. The median home price in California soared from $200,000 in March 2000 to $470,000 in March 2006, according to "Locked Out 2008," a report by the independent, nonprofit California Budget Project organization. About 45.3 percent of California households that own homes spent 30 percent or more of their incomes on housing in 2006. That compares with 29.1 percent of owner households for the rest of the nation. Also, about 27.4 percent of California households spent at least half of their income on housing in 2006, compared with 24.8 percent of all U.S. households. It's tough for renters, too, the report states, and California ranks second in the nation for its high rental costs. A Californian who earns $8 an hour, the state's minimum wage, would need t...