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Reading and Scranton Nab Spots on U.S.’s Most Affordable Places List

By: Kelly Leighton on in

Reading and Scranton were both named to a Top 50 Most Affordable Places to Buy a House in America list by RefiGuide.org.

Reading was named the 18th, while Scranton was named the 30th most affordable area. The site compared average income and average price of a home in the community to determine which places made the list.

Reading was graded as a 44.4% out of 100% on the affordability scale. “I feel like Berks County and the Reading area has been more affordable than surrounding counties for a long time,” said Angela Tolosky, president of the Reading-Berks Association of Realtors®. “Something that helps us is that we are so centrally local. People drive to Philly, Harrisburg or Lancaster for work from here. It’s very appealing.”

“The market is so hot and crazy right now,” she added. “Sellers are getting their listing price or higher. Things are blowing up exponentially here even more so. Because of the market, we have a shortage of houses. And the only negative thing here is the tax base; it is making builders hesitant to build here. If we could have more builders who would be more confident, our market would be stronger. New construction is lacking.”

Meanwhile, in the northeastern part of the state, Scranton was rated 41% of affordability out of 100%.

“It’s great to hear once again that Scranton is being recognized as one of the most affordable places to live,” said Paul Marcks, president of the Scranton Board of Realtors®. “This has been discussed and written about prior to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and as expected, we have seen record numbers of sales, low time on market and the results are a great real estate market. The city of Scranton has also embraced the volume of new residents and encouraged people to consider Scranton among their choices when shopping for a new place to live especially through telework. The show The Office for many has given Scranton notoriety, but the numbers are now showing once people visit and see what we have to offer, there is way more here and simply a photo op.”

Millennials Flocking to Scranton, Allentown

A realtor.com® report found that Scranton is third on the list of top U.S. cities for millennials, while Allentown is sixth. Both cities, along with the rest of the top 10 list, have homeownership rates of 47% of millennials aged 25 to 34, while the national average is just 43%.

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