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San Diego second most expensive city, HSH says

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San Diego ranks as the second most expensive metro area in California and the nation to buy a house, according to one new study.

HSH, a publisher of mortgage and consumer loan information, released a new study this week ranking 27 metro areas by median home price and the salary required to cover home costs, including principal, interest payments, taxes and insurance. Data comes from the National Association of Realtors’ third-quarter median house prices, and HSH.com’s third-quarter average interest rate for 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages.

In San Diego, homebuyers would need a salary of about $101,700 in order to buy a median-priced home at $517,800. Home prices have increased nearly 7 percent year-over-year, and nearly 3 percent from the second quarter, leading to an increase of almost $1,600 in the required salary. Mortgage rates fell slightly to 4.28 percent.

A San Diegan’s monthly home payment would be about $2,400.

San Francisco tops HSH’s list for both California and the country, with a median house price of $744,400. Quarterly prices dropped more than 3 percent, but prices went up nearly 6 percent year-over-year. The required salary would be about $145,000, HSH said, with a monthly house payment of $3,400.

“The difference in required salary to buy in the San Francisco metro versus the San Diego metro is still a whopping $43,678, and almost $113,000 more per year than the most affordable metro in our survey,” HSH said.

Los Angeles ranked third, filling the top three spots with California areas, with a salary of $96,500 needed for a median-priced home at $481,900.

New York and Boston filled the top five spots, and Washington, Seattle, Denver, Portland and Sacramento rounded out the top 10.

Pittsburgh closed out the list of 27 metro areas in terms of being the most affordable, for the second quarter in a row. A median home price of $136,700 would require a salary of about $32,400.

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