Report Studies Housing Affordability Issues in Florida
While low mortgage interest rates and rising household incomes made home buying more affordable in Florida towards the end of the last decade, that trend appears to be slowing down as unemployment has climbed at the same time as house prices have appreciated at a record clip, according to a recent report by the University of Florida’s Shimberg Center for Affordable Housing.
“Median incomes generally increased faster than median house prices over the 1990s time period,” says “The State of Florida’s Housing 2003,” which was revised in February. However, unemployment in Florida increased from 3.6% in January 2000 to 5.3% in January 2003,” resulting in a “bare increase” in per capita personal income from $28,366 in 2000 to $29,596 in 2002.
Over the last five years, the report says, house prices have increased by almost 4% over the rate of inflation, which is “higher than during any other five-year period we’ve recorded, including the high appreciation period of the 1970s.” (The report relies on a more elaborate method of determining price appreciation than calculating annual changes in median sales prices.)
According to preliminary estimates, house prices in Florida have increased 8% annually since 2000, the report says, at a time when general inflation averaged 1.97% annually.