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U.S. Starter Homes Are Scarcer, Pricier, Smaller and More Run-Down

U.S. Starter Homes Are Scarcer, Pricier, Smaller and More Run-Down

So says the headline in today’s Bloomberg News. Housing affordability remains a top concern in Connecticut for young families and even established workers.

We’ve said it before, but we’ll say it again. Connecticut is the sixth most expensive state in the union in which to live. This means that more people rent in the state than elsewhere, and that both owners and renters are cash-strapped.

A common rule of thumb is that a family should not pay more than 30 percent of income on housing if they wish to have sufficient funds left over to pay for other essentials – health care, child care, food, transportation, utilities, insurance and taxes.

However, a quick survey of our service area (using the 2016 United Way ALICE Report) shows that there are plenty of towns where a significant portion of the population pays more than 30 percent of income to keep a roof over their heads.

So, yes, homes are pricier. More run-down? That too. According to the Partnership for Strong Communities 22 percent of the housing stock in the state was built prior 1939; and 36 percent was built between 1940 and 1969. That means more homes needing costly repairs, and more homes that are less energy efficient.

According to Bloomberg, “Homebuyers in the U.S. have plenty to grouse about these days. Prices have climbed steeply in many metro areas, mortgage rates are rising and inventory is thin. But for people looking to purchase their first home, it’s ugly out there.” read the story