Housing affordability near record high

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Housing affordability remained near an 18-year high during the second quarter, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI) released this month. The index, which measures the share of new and resale homes affordable to families earning the national median income of $64,000, showed that the housing affordability was up from 55 percent during the second quarter of 2008 to 72.3 second quarter percent this year, and down slightly from 72.5 percent in first-quarter 2009. The increase in affordability -- along with the $8,000 federal tax credit for homebuyers -- is stimulating demand, particularly among young, first-time buyers, said NAHB Chairman Joe Robson in a statement. He encouraged an extension and expansion of the program to stimulate activity in the trade-up market. Nationally, according to the NAHB report, Indianapolis ranked as the most affordable housing market in the nation during the second quarter, with a...