During the last 3 years, we have experienced a tremendous appreciation in the priced of homes in Palm Beach County, with a 30% increase in the last 12 months. This has created a situation where the average wage earner is not able to afford a home.
The average price for a condo is $155,000, townhouse $185,000 and single family home is $327,000. While these are still affordable to many, there are added costs. For condo's and town homes, the monthly maintenance is on an average $200 a month. For a single family home, the association fees average $150 a month.
The next factor is the tax rate. The rate is approximately 2% of the purchase price. Furthermore, insurance is also an additional factor.
If a buyer purchased a $200,000 town home, he would incur the following monthly expenses. The mortgage would be $1200 a month at a 6% rate, maintenance of $175 and taxes of $330. This results in a total monthly payment of $1705, which is beyond the means of the average consumer.
The major problem the consumer faces, when trying to locate affordable housing is that the cost of a home is a higher percentage of their take home pay then many can afford. From my personal experience, I have had many clients searching for months for homes to no avail.
The county has recently developed a plan to build affordable housing in a section of Boynton Beach Florida for people who make under $38,000 a year. This is hopefully the start of trend to provide affordable housing for a large portion of the population, who has been unable to find a place to call home.