Special Report

Cities Where Homes Cost Less Than a Car

10. Port Richey, Fla.
>Median listing price: $59,900
>Comparably priced car: Cadillac CTS-V ($71,000)
>Housing price change (year over year): -0.1%
>Median household income: $31,016
>Unemployment rate: 8.6%

Port Richey was clearly devastated by foreclosures, job losses and builders who overestimated demand for new homes. That’s evident in its whopping 24.7% vacant housing rate, which is more than twice the national average. Housing prices in the area have fallen 48% from their peak, according to Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) data.

Also Read: The Fastest Growing Cities in America

9. Holiday, Fla.
>Median listing price: $59,900
>Comparably priced car: Tesla Model S ($69,900 with 85 kwh battery)
>Housing price change (year over year): -0.1%
>Median household income: $37,240
>Unemployment: 8.6%

Holiday’s 22.2% vacant housing rate, nearly twice the national average, is a hole so big that it will take years for housing demand to match supply. The 8.6% unemployment rate, though unexceptional for America, may further stunt a local recovery. Like neighboring Port Richey, housing prices have also plummeted 48% from their peak, according to the FHFA.

8. Youngstown, Ohio
>Median listing price: $57,550
>Comparably priced car: Chevy Suburban ($68,900)
>Housing price change (year over year): n/a
>Median household income: $25,002
>Unemployment: 7.4%

Just as the age of a tree is revealed by rings in its trunk, the age of a town’s housing stock, coupled by new construction rates, speaks volumes about the sturdiness of a city. In the U.S., only 14.4% of homes were built before 1940; in Youngstown, it’s more than 40%. New home construction is at a standstill. Nearly 19% of homes stand vacant, which places further downward pressure on a local recovery.

7. Dearborn Heights, Mich.
>Median listing price: $55,000
>Comparably priced car: Cadillac Escalade ($64,800)
>Housing price change (year over year): 5.2%
>Median household income: $48,905
>Unemployment: 9.9%

The city of Dearborn Heights is home to many workers in the auto industry, so it is far from immune to housing and other economic issues plaguing many Michigan cities. Home prices in the city have fallen by a fairly drastic 55.2% since their peak, according to FHFA data. Yet Dearborn Heights would appear to have a little more upside than some of its neighboring cities if only because Ford is preserving it, and because the number of residents earning more than $100,000 annually remains in line with national averages, unlike any of the other cities on this list.

6. Whiting, N.J.
>Median listing price: $52,450
>Comparably priced car: Chevy Corvette Grand Sport ($64,650)
>Housing price change (year over year): n/a
>Median household income: $37,397
>Unemployment: 11.9%

Whiting, an unincorporated area in Ocean County, is home to many retirement communities. The aging of the Baby Boomer population may help lead Whiting out of its funk. Unemployment isn’t especially high. In fact, unlike many other towns on this list, the vacant housing unit rate of 7.8% is below the national average of 11.8%.

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