May 9, 2024 - Real Estate

Richmond's unaffordable neighborhoods

Illustration of a wave of money overtaking a house.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

More than half of Richmond neighborhoods are unaffordable for a two-income couples making more than $100,000 a year looking to buy a home, according to a new study.

Why it matters: The study ranks Richmond as the nation's 10th least affordable city for homebuyers and one of 12 metros where the average couple is priced out of half or more of the local neighborhoods.

  • The top-10 list includes California's largest metros, New York and Boston.

The big picture: The report from Credit News used data from Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, the Census Bureau and Zillow to determine how affordable homes in the nation's largest metro are for their most affluent buyers.

  • It also looked at how the pandemic changed affordability in each metro.

State of play: The homes in 55.9% of Richmond's 161 neighborhoods are too expensive for a married couple making $127,796 a year, the area's median married couple household income, per the report.

  • That's an 11.94 percentage point increase from pre-COVID levels when 43.96% of local neighborhoods were too pricey for median married earners.

Zoom in: The median sale price of a single-family home in metro Richmond has hovered around $400,000 since last year, according to data from the Richmond Association of Realtors.

  • That's a 47% increase from Richmond's $273,000 median single-family price at the close of 2019.
  • Richmond metro's median household income, meanwhile, rose around 3% between 2019 and 2022, according to the latest census data.

Reality check: Richmond's unaffordable homebuying market isn't news to most locals. The pandemic-fueled work-from-home movement helped make Richmond a magnet for higher-earning NoVa and DC transplants, long-since priced out of their own market.


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