Note: The affordability ratings are part of John Burns’ Housing Cycle Barometer, which calculates the ratio between housing costs for the median-priced existing home and income levels. John Burns Real Estate Consulting analyzes 26-plus years of history in each metropolitan area and compares the current ratios with the median ratios in each area. The down payment and mortgage payments are appropriately weighted based on total expenditures over the life of a typical home purchase. This methodology accurately determines which markets are overpriced and underpriced, even in an environment with historically low mortgage rates. The barometer ranges from 0 to 10, and is generally categorized as follows:

Significantly overpriced compared with history: 7.6 to 10.0

Overpriced compared with history: 5.0 to 7.5

Underpriced compared with history: 0.0 to 4.9

Notes:

  • Median price info from the National Association of Realtors, unless otherwise noted.
  • Projected percent change through Q3 2009 from Fiserv.
  • Bottom projections from Fiserv and Moody’s Economics.com.
  • Affordability rating from John Burns Real Estate Consulting.
  • Foreclosure data from RealtyTrac.