• Bad news for singles: Zillow says it will take you 17 years to save for home down payment

    By: KIRO 7 News Staff


    There are lots of great things about being single in Seattle. But having enough money to buy a home is not one of them.

    Zillow released a new report about how hard it is for single people to buy a home.

    It says nationally, it takes single homebuyers nearly 11 years to save for a down payment. That's bad enough. But in the Seattle-Metro area, it would take a single homebuyer 17.1 years, compared to 7.6 years for a couple.

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    Zillow came up with the figures using home values and income data from Census.  The estimate is based on a 20 percent down payment on a median-priced home and assumes that the homebuyer is saving 10 percent of their income every year.   

    And it gets worse.  Zillow says a single buyer in Seattle could only afford a $234,656 home -- or only 12 percent of homes -- as compared to a couple, who could afford to buy a $529,317 home, or 68 percent of homes.  But the median price of homes currently listed in King County is $575,000, Zillow says.

    The Seattle-Metro figures estimated by Zillow are based on a median income of $46,000 for a single person and $103,200 for a couple.

    Because single buyers typically have a smaller budget than couples, they have fewer homes to choose from and are limited to the most in-demand portion of the housing stock -- in other words, the cheapest homes.

    Zillow says the number of homes for sale nationally is down nearly 11 percent over the past year, and down nearly 18 percent for the least expensive homes. A single person could afford to buy less than half (45 percent) of the U.S. housing stock, compared to a couple, who could afford 82 percent of all homes. 

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