Where are Americans Most “House Rich”?

By Hope Walborn | Feb. 15, 2024 | 2 min. read

Pennsylvania is the 13th most “house rich” state nationwide, according to a study completed by All Star Home.

All Star Home defines house rich places as “places where homeownership is dominant and homes are relatively affordable compared to the local median income.”

To find the most house rich places in the country, the study analyzed recent Census Bureau data and compared the median value of owner-occupied housing in an area to the median household income in that same area. They also considered the owner-occupied and non-owner-occupied housing rates to gauge the dominance of homeownership in each area. Each state and city studied was assigned a house rich score, with a low score indicating a more house rich area (an area where housing is affordable and homeownership is dominant).

Nationwide, the median home-value-to-income ratio is 3.33, with 66.75% of the country’s housing units being owner-occupied.

The top house rich states include West Virginia, Iowa and Michigan. Pennsylvania is the 13th most house rich state, with a home-value-to-income ratio of 2.92, an owner-occupied housing unit rate of 69.20% and a house rich score of 0.8991.

On the other hand, the least house rich states are those with the highest costs of living. The least house rich states are California, Hawaii and New York, with house rich scores of 3.0331, 2.9341 and 2.0665, respectively.

Notably, Philadelphia made the list of major U.S. cities that are most house rich. In eighth place, Philly has a home-value-to-income ratio of 3.50, an owner-occupied housing unit rate of 52.40% and a house rich score of 1.6644.

When buying a home, many people choose to stay within their budget for financial security. The survey part of this study found that of the reasons Americans don’t max out their budgets when purchasing a home, 49% want peace of mind knowing they’re not maxed out, 29% want extra funds for upgrades and repairs, 27% want to save money for other purchases unrelated to housing and 21% want extra funds for furniture.

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