Financial Security
Cost of Homeownership


Cost of Homeownership

What does this measure?

The median home value divided by the median household income, adjusted for inflation.

Why is this important?

The ratio provides a rough estimate of the affordability of homes in a community. A ratio less than 2 or 3 is generally considered affordable.

How is our region doing?

In 2014-18, homes were not generally very affordable in MetroWest, with an affordability ratio of 4.5, compared to the national ratio of 3.4. This was, however, lower than Massachusetts' overall ratio of 4.7. By comparison, Boston's ratio is extremely high, at 7.4. Housing affordability in the region has decreased from 2000, when the ratio was 3.6. This mirrors state and national trends of a decline in affordability.

The least affordable municipalities in MetroWest were Lincoln and Weston, at 7.1 and 6.7, respectively. The most affordable was Bellingham, at 2.9.

Notes about the data

Multiyear figures are from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey. The bureau combined five years of responses to the survey to provide estimates for smaller geographic areas and increase the precision of its estimates. The survey provides data on characteristics of the population that used to be collected only during the decennial census. Data for this indicator are released annually in December.

Cost of Homeownership
United States2.73.33.4
Acton town, Middlesex County3.54.34.1
Ashland town, Middlesex County3.13.73.2
Bedford town, Middlesex County3.75.04.8
Bellingham town, Norfolk County2.53.62.9
Boxborough town, Middlesex County3.84.94.9
Carlisle town, Middlesex County3.54.74.8
Concord town, Middlesex County4.65.15.8
Dedham town, Norfolk County3.64.44.6
Dover town, Norfolk County4.34.84.5
Framingham city, Middlesex County3.95.14.9
Franklin town, Norfolk County3.83.6
Groton town, Middlesex County3.43.73.6
Harvard town, Worcester County3.44.23.7
Holliston town, Middlesex County3.03.53.5
Hopkinton town, Middlesex County3.44.03.5
Hudson town, Middlesex County3.14.13.8
Lexington town, Middlesex County4.35.04.9
Lincoln town, Middlesex County7.06.87.1
Littleton town, Middlesex County3.43.63.6
Marlborough city, Middlesex County3.24.44.2
Maynard town, Middlesex County3.14.23.4
Medfield town, Norfolk County3.64.44.2
Medway town, Norfolk County3.13.43.4
Milford town, Worcester County3.34.53.6
Millis town, Norfolk County3.24.13.7
Natick town, Middlesex County3.54.54.9
Needham town, Norfolk County4.35.25.3
Sherborn town, Middlesex County4.14.64.3
Southborough town, Worcester County3.13.44.1
Stow town, Middlesex County3.13.83.3
Sudbury town, Middlesex County3.63.73.8
Walpole town, Norfolk County3.24.44.2
Waltham city, Middlesex County4.65.45.8
Wayland town, Middlesex County3.84.53.9
Wellesley town, Norfolk County4.85.75.8
Westborough town, Worcester County3.43.94.1
Westford town, Middlesex County2.83.63.8
Weston town, Middlesex County4.75.2***6.7
Westwood town, Norfolk County4.14.74.5

Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Notes: Ratio of median home value to median household income. Multiyear results are from rolling American Community Survey. * Margin of error between 20% & 35% of estimate; ** margin of error between 35% & 50%; *** margin of error greater than 50%.

Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Disengaged Youth Decreasing
Reports of Domestic Violence Maintaining
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Increasing
Households Without Vehicles Maintaining
Means of Transportation to Work Not Applicable
Average Travel Time to Work Increasing
Households With Internet Access Not Applicable
Voter Participation Rate Decreasing
Average Charitable Contribution Maintaining
Protected Land Not Applicable
Drug Poisoning Mortality Rate Increasing
Crimes Against People Decreasing
Incarceration Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Total Population Increasing
Change in Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Language Diversity Increasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Change in Population by Age/Gender Not Applicable
Seniors Living Alone Decreasing
People with Disabilities Maintaining
Change in Total Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate Maintaining
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
High-Tech Jobs Decreasing
Female to Male Earnings Ratio Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Student Performance on Grade 3 English, by Student Subgroup Not Applicable
Chronically Absent Students Decreasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate by Student Group Increasing
Education Levels of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
People Living in Poverty, by Education Level Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Household Receiving Temporary Assistance Maintaining
Participation in Food Assistance by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income Maintaining
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Living Wage Not Applicable
80/20 Income Ratio Maintaining
Access to Financial Services, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates Increasing
Homeownership Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Homeownership Increasing
Cost of Rent Not Applicable
Homelessness Increasing