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Mapped: The World’s Least Affordable Housing Markets in 2024

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Graphic highlighting impossibly unaffordable housing markets in 2024

The World’s Least Affordable Housing Markets in 2024

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Many cities around the world have become very expensive to buy a home in, but which ones are the absolute most unattainable?

In this graphic, we highlight a number of housing markets that are deemed to be “impossibly unaffordable” in 2024, ranked by their median price-to-income ratio.

This data comes from the Demographia International Housing Affordability Report, which is produced by the Chapman University Center for Demographics and Policy.

Data and Key Takeaway

The median price-to-income ratio compares median house price to median household income within each market. A higher ratio (higher prices relative to incomes) means a city is less affordable.

See the following table for all of the data we used to create this graphic. Note that this analysis covers 94 markets across eight countries: Australia, Canada, China, Ireland, New Zealand, Singapore, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

RankMetropolitan MarketCountryMedian price-to-income
ratio
1Hong Kong (SAR)๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ China16.7
2Sydney๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Australia13.8
3Vancouver๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada12.3
4San Jose๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.11.9
5Los Angeles๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.10.9
6Honolulu๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.10.5
7Melbourne๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Australia9.8
8San Francisco๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.9.7
9Adelaide๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Australia9.7
10San Diego๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.9.5
11Toronto๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada9.3
12Auckland๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฟ New Zealand8.2

According to the Demographia report, cities with a median price-to-income ratio of over 9.0 are considered โ€œimpossibly unaffordableโ€.

We can see that the top city in this ranking, Hong Kong, has a ratio of 16.7. This means that the median price of a home is 16.7 times greater than the median income.

Which Cities are More Affordable?

On the flipside, here are the top 12 most affordable cities that were analyzed in the Demographia report.

RankMetropolitan MarketCountryMedian price-to-income
ratio
1Pittsburgh๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.3.1
2Rochester๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.3.4
2St. Louis๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.3.4
4Cleveland๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.3.5
5Edmonton๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada3.6
5Buffalo๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.3.6
5Detroit๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.3.6
5Oklahoma City๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.3.6
9Cincinnati๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.3.7
9Louisville๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S.3.7
11Singapore๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Singapore3.8
12Blackpool & Lancashire๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง U.K.3.9

Cities with a median price-to-income ratio of less than 3.0 are considered “affordable”, while those between 3.1 and 4.0 are considered “moderately unaffordable”.

See More Real Estate Content From Visual Capitalist

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to check out Ranked: The Most Valuable Housing Markets in America.

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