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Housing affordability at record levels

Housing affordability is at an all-time low, resulting in easier moving scenarios for prospective home buyers.

Housing affordability is at an all-time low, resulting in easier moving scenarios for prospective home buyers.

More American families are able to afford the home of their dreams, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index.

The index revealed that nationwide housing affordability rose to record levels during the fourth quarter of 2011, but prospective home buyers were still affected by tighter lending standards and a recovering economy. With affordability up, more people might be able to take advantage of professional moving help, although buyers still feeling the pinch of a sour economy might want to consider cost-effective self move options like moving pods.

The HOI data showed that 75.9 percent of all new and existing home that were sold in the fourth quarter of 2011 were affordable for families that earned a median income of $64,200.

“While today’s report indicates that homeownership is within reach of more households than it has been for more than two decades, overly restrictive lending conditions confronting home buyers and builders remain significant obstacles to many potential homes sales, even with interest rates at historically low levels,” said Barry Rutenberg, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders and a home builder from Gainesville, Florida.

Freddie Mac also recently released figures showing the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage remained at an all-time record low of 3.87 percent in the first week of February.