A Fun Website for Checking Affordability

Peter Coy

Can an elementary school teacher afford a median-priced house in San Diego?

Can a police officer afford a median-priced house in Miami?

Can a graphic designer afford a median-priced house in Seattle?

Answers. No. No. And ... no.

How do I know this? From a cleverly designed website put together by the Center for Housing Policy, the research arm of a 75-year-old housing-affordability advocacy group called the National Housing Conference.

The agenda of the organization is evident in the available selection of jobs that you can plug into the affordability calculator--high-paying jobs like doctor and lawyer aren't listed.

But the methodology seems perfectly sound, drawing on median-price data from the National Association of Home Builders and wage data from Salary.com.

Check out the calculator at this link.