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Affordability

BUSINESS
May 9, 1989
Home Affordability Index Drops: Higher mortgage rates took away purchasing power from first-time home buyers during the first quarter of 1989, pushing home ownership further out of reach for many people trying to enter the market, the National Assn. of Realtors said. The NAR's First-Time Home Buyer Affordability Index measured 74.9 for the first three months of the year, meaning that the typical first-time buyer had 74.9% of the income needed to qualify to buy the typical starter home.
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BUSINESS
May 15, 2012 | By Alejandro Lazo
The latest round of real estate data shows home-builder confidence soaring as U.S. homes become more affordable. In California, sales and prices appear to be on the mend. In a note on Tuesday, Ian Sheperdson, chief U.S. economist for High Frequency Economics, wrote that the improvements in U.S. housing could be a result of credit loosening. The lack of ready availability of home loans has been one of the stumbling blocks to a rising market, he wrote. "The key story here, we think, is improving access to mortgage finance, rather than the level of rates, which have been very low for a long time," Sheperdson wrote, reacting to the rise in builder confidence.
BUSINESS
September 28, 2008 | Jessica Garrison
It's no surprise that Los Angeles should lag behind such emerald stars as Portland, Ore., San Francisco and Seattle in terms of sustainability . . . but Cleveland? Omaha? Dallas? Apparently so. According to the 2008 SustainLane U.S. City Rankings, which rate the nation's 50 largest cities in terms of urban sustainability, Los Angeles is behind those cities, and 21 others as well. The city fell three spots from last year, to No. 28. Why? Here's one clue: Rankings are based on factors including air quality, roadway congestion, sprawl and housing affordability.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 14, 1988
Recent articles (Aug. 8) in The Times on Orange County housing prices have gone on and on about hypothetical affordability indices. What's the point? Of course we have very high housing prices in Orange County. (It took my family eight years to save up for the 29-year-old, three-bedroom house we bought two months ago.) But is there a better way than high prices to decide which of California's roughly 25 million citizens will be able to live here? Would you rather turn to the government to decide on the basis of "need"?
SPORTS
May 12, 2001
Kudos to Bill Dwyre, Times sports editor, for his part in the demise of the XFL and the L.A. Xtreme. It's unfortunate for hundreds of pretty good football players, as well as coaches, staffs, and thousands of fans who liked the overall quality of play, innovative rules changes on overtimes and points after touchdowns, and the games' affordability. Dwyre was quoted when the season began as saying the league would fail. His refusal to assign a regular beat writer to the team helped fulfill this prophecy.
OPINION
July 6, 2003
Re "Housing Prices in Santa Barbara Alarm Official," July 1: I am happy to see that Rep. Lois Capps (D-Santa Barbara) is finally waking up to the dire housing situation in her district. However, she glosses over the most significant point: that housing prices are predominantly an issue "for state and local governments." The real issue is one of supply constraint in the housing market in Santa Barbara County due to political and neighborhood resistance against new housing development. It is no coincidence that Santa Barbara County is the most vitriolic "slow growth/no growth" area in the state and that it has the fastest-rising housing prices.
OPINION
April 11, 2007
Re "L.A.'s vanishing vacancies," Current, April 8 As an observer on the sidelines of the rent control and condo conversion debates, I have two questions. First, isn't the only path to homeownership in Los Angeles for renters the purchase of a condominium because most houses are well beyond their affordability? If so, restricting the number of condominiums ultimately undermines the intent of a responsible leadership to promote homeownership. And second, why must homeowners subsidize an entire class of people through rent control?
OPINION
July 11, 2009
Re "A cost that pays," Editorial, July 6 The Legislature has twice passed a bill that has already answered all your questions: universal access, affordability, choice of providers, high-quality care, cost containment, efficiency and fiscal feasibility, based on the moral premise that our society should care for the "least of our neighbors." The governor has twice vetoed it on the most specious of grounds. Careful reading of the bill (SB 810) shows that it would help our financial situation while providing the kind of healthcare Californians want.
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