Owning a home is a part of the American dream. Homebuyers consider many factors when purchasing a home, including price, style, location, proximity to family or large metro areas, area safety, and job availability. If the homebuyer has children, then local school districts are another factor to be considered. Buying a home is a large financial commitment. Mortgage loans are the largest type of consumer debt in the United States and reached a record total of $9.5 trillion at the beginning of 2019.
Thanks to an expanding housing market over several decades, the median home value has more than double between 1999 and 2019, growing from $111,100 to $231,000. This increase has caused many people to put off buying a home until later in life, making renting more popular. In some states and cities, people have put off buying a home altogether.
Home Prices by State
In the majority of states, the median home price is over $200,000. While buyers can find a house at that price in almost every state, a $200,000 home looks very different depending on where you are looking. This includes the square footage, quality of the build, location, and age of the home. In Hawaii, the typical size of a $200,000 home is 421 square feet, while someone could get over 2,100 square feet for the same price in Alabama or Mississippi.
Typically, the states with the highest home prices also have the highest median household incomes. Home prices vary greatly from state to state and city to city. Even within cities, home prices can vary greatly depending on the neighborhood. While home prices have been rising, some communities are facing hard economic times, negatively impacting the local housing market.
States with the Most Expensive Home Prices
The median home value in Hawaii is $587,700. The size of a typical home in Hawaii is about 1,209 square feet and 4.6 rooms. $200,000 would only get a homebuyer about 421 square feet. Those looking to rent won’t have much better luck, as Hawaii has the third-highest average rent price in the United State of $2,333 per month. The District of Columbia has the second-highest median home value of $568,400. The median home size in the District is around 1,169 square feet and is continuing to shrink. One reason that new homes are getting smaller is that more apartments are being built than houses to meet the demand of a rising population. The District of Columbia has a median household income of $85,203, helping homebuyers afford D.C.’s small, expensive homes.
California has the third-highest median home value in the U.S. of $475,900. For this price, a homebuyer could expect to get 1,648 square feet and five rooms total. As in Hawaii, those looking to rent in California to avoid an expensive housing market will still pay around $2,542 per month, the highest average rent in the U.S. The median home value in Massachusetts is $366,800. The typical size of a $200,000 home is around 1,200 square feet, the second-smallest size for a home of that price of any state. A typical home in Massachusetts is just slightly larger than in California at 1,684 square feet. New Jersey’s median home value is $327,900, the fifth-highest of any state. New Jersey’s typical home size is 1,728 square feet. Luckily, those looking to buy a home in New Jersey also have the second-highest median household income in the U.S. of $81,740.
States with the Least Expensive Home Prices
Mississippi’s median home value of $114,500 is the cheapest in the country. The typical size of a $200,000 home is 2,236 square feet, the second-largest size one could find at that price point. While Mississippi has generally inexpensive homes, the median household income is also the second-lowest in the U.S. at $44,717. West Virginia has both the lowest median home price at $115,000 and the second-lowest median household income at $44,097. For $200,000, a homebuyer could expect to get about 2,140 of space in a home, the third-largest square footage for that price point of any state.
Arkansas has the third-lowest median home value of $123,300, as well as the third-lowest median household income of $47,062. A homebuyer looking to spend $200,000 in Arkansas will get about 2,096. A typical Arkansas home is around 1,725 square feet. With a median home value of $130,900, Oklahoma has the fourth-lowest median home price. A typical home in Oklahoma is around 1,662 square feet, the 13th-smallest typically home size in the U.S. The median home value in Kentucky is $135,300. For a $200,000 home, a buyer would get around 1,977 square feet, the tenth-largest home size for that price in the United States. The typical home size in Kentucky is 1,664 square feet and 5.6 rooms.