The initial estimate of the median home price in California in the first quarter of 2023 was $760,260, for single-family residences (SFRs) only. Using this estimate, about 20% of California households could afford to purchase a median-priced home. This demonstrates a rebound from the last quarter of 2022, where it had dropped to 17% of households, down from 24% in the first quarter of 2022.
Affordability is weakest in Mono County, which experienced no change from its very low 7% affordability. The most affordable county has remained Lassen County, despise a slight drop from 54% at the end of 2022 to 53% now. Mendocino County had the largest increase in affordability, an increase of 12% from 14% at the end of 2022 to 26% now. No decreases in affordability exceeded 3% during the same time frame.
Though the US as a whole is significantly more affordable that the rather expensive California, the numbers show a similar trend. Affordability was higher in the first quarter of 2022, at 47%. It had dropped to 38% in the last quarter of 2022 before inching back up to 40% in 2023. Only three California counties — Siskiyou, Plumas, and Lassen — have a higher affordability rating than the national average.