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Where You Don’t Have to Feel Bad If You’re a 40-Year-Old Renter
Emily Badger / The Atlantic Cities / July 11, 2013
The Census Bureau released additional data Thursday from the 2011 American Housing Survey, an in-depth snapshot taken every two years of the types of homes we keep, how we pay for and heat them, even how many of us have fireplaces that are actually “usable” (among homeowners, it’s 46 percent). Nationwide, the median monthly mortgage paid in 2011 was $1,015, which sounds like a steal if you live in New York, or a ripoff if you make your home in Pittsburgh.
The data is particularly interesting for what it reveals about the stark differences between housing markets depending on where in America you live, and not just for the median home values. The cost of housing also dramatically influences the shape of it, whether more properties are rentals, or owner-occupied – or outright owned by someone who owes nothing to the bank.
In addition to releasing some national data Thursday, Census also published 29 metropolitan profiles that illustrate these differences (the cities surveyed every two years rotate). For reference, this is the shape of the national housing market, broken down by age group: