Home prices are strengthening and affordability of houses is slightly lower, according to new data from the second quarter of 2012. The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI) found that 92 percent of metropolitan areas had a rise in median home prices over the first quarter of 2012.

Some homebuyers might not welcome this news, but for the home seller, it’s “another signal that the housing recovery is starting to take root,” said NAHB Chairman Barry Rutenberg, “and it lends needed confidence to prospective buyers and sellers who have been reluctant to move forward in the current marketplace.”

According to the report, 73.8 percent of all homes sold during this period were affordable to households earning the mean national income of $65,000.

Looking at the bottom of that list, major metropolitan areas with the least affordable homes, the number one city is no surprise: New York-White Plains-Wayne, N.Y.-N.J. (a distinction it’s held for 17 consecutive quarters), followed by the metro areas of San Francisco, Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, Conn., four other California areas as well as Honolulu and Miami.

Topping the list are Youngstown-Warren-Boardman, Ohio-PA.; Dayton, Ohio; Buffalo-Niagara Falls, NY; Indianapolis-Carmel, IN; Modesto, CA; Ogden-Clearfield, UT; Harrisburg-Carlisle, PA; Lakeland-Winter Haven, FL; Wilmington, DE metro area; and Columbia, SC.

Median housing price in Harrisburg-Carlisle PA is $147,000. The Housing Opportunity Index (HOI) in Pennsylvania’s capital city metro area is 90.6, meaning about nine in 10 homes on the market are affordable to households bringing in the median income of $73,500.

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