By Christina Sturgis
Although the foreclosure crisis is not yet resolved for Ohio, here’s something Streetsboro homeowners can take to the bank. The Akron region was recently highlighted by Forbes as one of the most affordable real estate markets in the nation.
Affordability, according to Forbes, does not mean merely low home prices but also takes into account the median income and cost of living. One factor is the Housing Opportunity Index issued by Wells Fargo and the National Home Builders Association. This index states Akron has an HOI of 86.8, meaning that 86.8 percent of homes are affordable for households with the median income, $64,400. The median home price is $100,000.
The latest U.S. Census Bureau statistics for Streetsboro paint a slightly different picture: the median home price is $149,800 and the median income is $63,485.
Ohio is very well represented on the Forbes list, which includes Cincinnati, Dayton, Akron, Toledo and Columbus. The Midwest does well on this list, too, with mentions for Michigan cities Grand Rapids, Detroit and Warren.
The most affordable city is the Buffalo-Niagara Falls metropolitan statistical area because the Housing Opportunity Index states that 88.5 percent of households can afford the median-priced home. The cost of living index for Buffalo is 96.1 on a scale where 100 is average for the United States.
In second place is Memphis, part of a metropolitan area that touches both Mississippi and Arkansas. The city is known for a variant of rhythm and blues called the Memphis Sound and for Elvis Presley’s Graceland Mansion. Yet, you don’t have to be a king to live well there; the cost of living is indexed at 91.8 on a scale where 100 is average for the United States, and a housing opportunity index of 78.7. That means the median-priced home is affordable to 78.7 percent of households.