Did your home earn more than you did last year?

by Patrick Regan

Home value appreciation was greater than median annual earnings in 25 of the largest 38 U.S. metro areas in 2021, a new Zillow report found, and Boston was no exception.

In the Boston-Cambridge-Newton region, home values grew by $76,616 during 2021, exceeding the median pre-tax income of $66,852 by $9,764. And though that difference may sound substantial, in fact, it did not land Boston near the top of Zillow’s list.

The ten areas where home value growth most outpaced local salaries were, in order: San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara (with a difference of $136,277), San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward ($129,914), San Diego-Carlsbad ($105,790), Urban Honolulu ($87,254), Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim ($81,979), Boise City ($74,979), Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue ($66,129), Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario ($66,014), Salt Lake City ($65,901) and Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale ($51,470).

What does that all mean? Well, homeowners are in a good spot, while those trying to save up for a down payment or are in a renting situation have more work to do.

Zillow’s report found that in Boston, the typical full-year rent increased by more than $3,948 last year.

“While homeowners watched their assets multiply in 2021, the chasm separating many renters from homeownership widened, as home prices skyrocketed and rising rents eroded their ability to save for a down payment,” the report found.

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