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The coronavirus pandemic has put pressure on markets across the U.S. According to a new realtor.com® study, however, two of the top 100 metros—Des Moines and Baton Rouge, La.—offer both affordability and adequate supply of for-sale listings.

According to the REALTORS® Affordability Distribution Score, homes listed for sale in Q1 of 2020 were 8 percent more affordable when compared to the same time last year. But inventory is down and that’s driving prices up. The report found that while there were, on average, 17 listings per every 1,000 households when looking at long-term historical averages, that ratio reduced to eight listings per 1,000 households at the end of the first quarter.

Of all top 100 metros, only Des Moines and Baton Rouge had more than 10 active listings per 1,000 households, as well as an affordability score of at least 0.80.

Metros that have historically been considered affordable—Buffalo and Rochester, N.Y.; Columbus, Ohio; Springfield, Mass.; and Harrisburg, Pa.—are now low on inventory, driving prices up and lowering their affordability score.

Here are the most affordable markets from the top 100 metros:

1. Des Moines-West Des Moines, Iowa
Active Listings: 3.026
Number of Households: 277,780
Listings Per Households: 10.9
Current Listings v. Long-Term Average: 0.63
Median Listing Prices (April): $269,800
Affordability Score (April): 1.03

2. Baton Rouge, La.
Active Listings: 3.782
Number of Households: 323,455
Listings Per Households: 11.7
Current Listings v. Long-Term Average: 0.68
Median Listing Prices (April): $248,800
Affordability Score (April): 1.00

3. Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, Ga.
Active Listings: 37,351
Number of Households: 2,245,003
Listings Per Households: 16.6
Current Listings v. Long-Term Average: 0.96
Median Listing Prices (April): $325,050
Affordability Score (April): 0.89

4. Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, Va.-N.C.
Active Listings: 7,252
Number of Households: 676,056
Listings Per Households: 10.7
Current Listings v. Long-Term Average: 0.62
Median Listing Prices (April): $316,050
Affordability Score (April): 0.89

5. Jacksonville, Fla.
Active Listings: 8,348
Number of Households: 620,914
Listings Per Households: 13.4
Current Listings v. Long-Term Average: 0.78
Median Listing Prices (April): $311,545
Affordability Score (April): 0.83

6. Lakeland-Winter Haven, Fla.
Active Listings: 2,991
Number of Households: 269,066
Listings Per Households: 11.1
Current Listings v. Long-Term Average: 0.78
Median Listing Prices (April): $235,050
Affordability Score (April): 0.87

“The lack of affordable homes for sale has been the No. 1 issue facing homebuyers for the last several years,” said realtor.com® Chief Economist Danielle Hale. “The COVID pandemic has eased the affordability side of the equation by lowering interest rates, but it has also prompted many sellers to delay listing their homes. As buyers return, we’ll need to see sellers come back for the housing market to normalize.”

For more information, please visit www.realtor.com.

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