TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A question on many Americans’ minds in 2023: Can you afford to buy a house? Or could you afford a house last year?
The answer to that question for Tampa residents is changing, at least according to analysis by RubyHome, a luxury real estate company.
For a Tampa homebuyer in 2022, a yearly income of about $74,000 was all you needed. Now, that number has grown to $113,000.
RubyHome said that home prices were at record highs in 2022, and along with higher mortgage rates and ongoing inflation increases, the real estate market is still “ever-changing.”
“This, combined with the speculation of an oncoming recession, means homebuyers may struggle to know what they can realistically afford as we enter the ‘buying season’ of 2023,” RubyHome said.
Compared to 2022, RubyHome reports Tampa residents need to earn almost $39,000 more per year in order to afford buying a house. Nationally, that number has gone up by about $31,000 instead.
The data from RubyHome comes with commentary, going over price changes, interest rates, the market, and even the state of real estate in America now.
RubyHome said the current market shows “home affordability is out of whack.” For potential home buyers, “interest rates are having the most impact,” meaning you need to earn more to buy a house.
The changes are due to federal policies to fight inflation, and their effects on the American economy.
“In the early summer of 2022, interest rates hovered at 3.10%,” RubyHome said. “Then, the Federal Reserve began its effort to combat inflation by implementing successive interest rate hikes until mortgage rates reached nearly 7%.”
While the rates, as of this week, have come down to 6.12%, they’ve remained elevated from the pandemic years. For the average American, it’s made the salary needed to buy a home hit $107,000, according to the real estate company’s analysis. RubyHome said that was a 34% increase for the U.S. The increase, proportionally, was the same in Tampa.
Still, based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Americans now need to earn over twice the average salary of $53,490, or seven times the federal minimum wage, to buy a single-family home,” according to RubyHome’s analysis.