Mumbai homes more expensive than Shanghai
As people around the world move into cities and look for housing, one thing is clear: Most will have a hard time paying for it.
Average monthly take-home pay won’t cover the cost of buying a 1,000-square-foot residence or renting a three-bedroom home in any of the 105 metropolitan areas ranked by the Bloomberg Global City Housing Affordability Index – based on a general rule of thumb among US lenders that people should spend no more than 28 percent of net income on housing costs. Only 12 cities would be considered affordable if they spend 50 percent.
Residents face many obstacles, including urban land-use regulations, underdeveloped rental markets and difficulty getting financing, according to Enrique Martínez-García, a senior research economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas who studies housing prices. Policy solutions to these problems aren’t clear, he adds.
“Not having access to credit is a challenge to develop a healthy housing market,” he said. “But opening it up too fast might be a problem as well; it might actually lead to a boom-bust episode.”