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OAKLAND, CA—The average cost of a home in California is $440,000, two-and-a-half times the average national home price. This is not a recent phenomenon: the legislative analyst’s office states that housing prices first began escalating between 1970 and 1980,  but has continued the alarming trend with no signs of abating any time soon.

The state’s average rent is also outpacing the national average at $1,240 per month, which is 50% higher than the rest of the country. Affordability is far more critical for this region with home prices surging in recent years. According to a recent study by RealtyTrac, the median price for a three-bedroom apartment in the San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward region would cost more than $3,000 per month, more than 44% of the region’s average wage. With increasing demand in coastal communities and not enough housing stock, steep competition increases both purchase prices and rents, and forces people inland to find housing they can afford.

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Lisa Brown

Lisa Brown is an editor for the south and west regions of GlobeSt.com. She has 25-plus years of real estate experience, with a regional PR role at Grubb & Ellis and a national communications position at MMI. Brown also spent 10 years as executive director at NAIOP San Francisco Bay Area chapter, where she led the organization to achieving its first national award honors and recognition on Capitol Hill. She has written extensively on commercial real estate topics and edited numerous pieces on the subject.

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