As it watches 60 top metro markets, applies various measures. One is the “Percent Income”: The percentage of the local median family income needed to cover the mortgage on a median (sale) priced single-family home, with 20 percent down and a 30-year fixed mortage at prevailing rates.

Greater Cincinnati’s number – only 13.9 percent of that median paycheck is needed for the mortgage — is another testament to housing affordability here. We ranked sixth, behind Detroit (11.4), Indianapolis (11.8), Cleveland (13.3), Grand Rapids, MI (13.3) and Omaha (13.4).

At the other end of the scale, the most expensive housing market in relation to income would be Los Angeles (where 63.5 of the median paycheck is needed to cover that median-priced property), followed by San Francisco (58.2), New York (56.5), San Jose, CA (55.0), Orange County, CA (54.3), Honolulu (53.9) and San Diego (51.8).
(, 3rd quarter 2007)