How much do you have to make to buy a home in Fresno?

A continuing lack of inventory has pushed the median price of a Fresno-area home for sale to $250,000.
A continuing lack of inventory has pushed the median price of a Fresno-area home for sale to $250,000.

Fresnans have to make a little bit more money these days to buy the area’s median-priced home of $250,000.

A buyer has to have an annual income of at least $50,000 a year, according to the second-quarter affordability report released Wednesday by the California Association of Realtors. That’s up by about $1,000 from the beginning of the year.

$250,000 median price for a home in Fresno

A severe lack of homes for sale and higher home prices are eroding housing affordability across the state, the association said. Home prices have doubled since affordability reached its highest level in the first quarter of 2012 and now buyers need twice the income to buy.

“It’s tough out there right now if you’re looking to buy,” said Kristy Henry, president of the Fresno Association of Realtors.

The search is tougher with only about 1,000 homes and condominiums for sale in the Fresno and Clovis area, Henry said. Typically, there would be around 2,500 homes for sale in a healthy market, she said.

Compared to the state, we look good.

Kristy Henry, president Fresno Association of Realtors

Despite low inventory and higher home prices, the central San Joaquin Valley remains affordable. Nearly half of the buyers in Fresno and Madera – and 52 percent in Kings and Tulare counties – can afford today’s median-priced house which ranges from $220,000 to $259,900. That’s not bad considering only about 12 percent of the buyers in San Francisco can buy the median-priced home at $1.45 million.

But that’s a far cry from 2012 when 72 percent of the prospective buyers in Fresno earning nearly $30,000 a year could buy a house that cost around $152,000.

“When you see that our median price is $250,000, you’re like, ‘That’s OK,’ ” Henry said, “but when you see what you have to make, it’s like, ‘Holy cow.’ 

BoNhia Lee: 559-441-6495, @bonhialee

Housing Affordability Index


Affordability Index

Median price

Monthly payment

Minimum income































Source: California Association of Realtors