Mar 6, 2024 - News

Valley singles need to save 19 more years than couples to afford a starter home

Years needed for <span style='text-decoration: underline 3px solid #6533ff;'>couples</span> and <span style='text-decoration: underline 3px solid #ff4e1f;'>individuals</span> to afford a starter home down payment, by metro area
Data: Point2; Note: Down payment calculated as the minimum amount needed to have an affordable mortgage (<30% of monthly income) for the median-priced starter home in each market, or at least 20% down; Chart: Axios Visuals

It takes singles more than six times as long as couples to save enough money for a down payment on a house in Phoenix, per a recent Point2 study.

Why it matters: The Valley used to be known for the abundant and affordable housing that drove our explosive population growth for generations, but it now faces a massive shortfall in housing units, and that has driven up prices for single-family homes.

By the numbers: On average it takes a couple in Phoenix 3.7 years to save for a down payment.

  • But if you're single, it'll take an average of 22.7 years, a 19-year gap.
  • The gap is bigger in other parts of the Valley, such as Glendale (26 years), Gilbert (23.4) and Mesa (21.6)
  • The study assumes people are saving 20% of their income for a downpayment.

The big picture: Phoenix's gap is well above the national average of 6.3 years.

Zoom in: The median income for singles is just under $43,000 in Phoenix, compared to over $86,000 for couples, per Point2 data.

Between the lines: Starter homes cost an average of about $316,000 in Phoenix, but prices are higher in some parts of the Valley and up to $453,000 in Scottsdale.

The fine print: A starter home is defined as the median price of the cheaper third of listings in the region.

Zoom out: In parts of California, it would take the average individual a lifetime to save enough money for a down payment and two to three decades for couples.

  • In other places, such as parts of the Midwest, it takes only a few years for singles to save the cash.

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Phoenix.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Phoenix stories

No stories could be found


Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Phoenix.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more