Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Where in SLC do people spend most of their paychecks on housing and transportation?

When deciding where to live, one of the trade-offs people often make is enduring a longer commute to be able to enjoy the lower house prices available on a city's periphery. Is that a smart trade? An amazing housing and transportation affordability index provides perspective at the neighborhood level, and here's what the Salt Lake Valley looks like, in terms of the percent of one's paycheck spent on housing and transportation:

It's hard to make fair comparisons here, as houses vary in size from area to area. So we can't say those living in the core are getting more housing sq ft and job access per dollar than those on the periphery. Incomes also, of course, vary by area. What we can say, however, is that those living near SLC's CBD and near I-15 do spend less of their paychecks on housing and transportation each month than those living in places like Draper, Herriman, and most of South Jordan (by up to 20%). The particular sweet spots appear to be the east side of SLC's CBD and South Salt Lake. The site also has great maps on local incomes, vehicle miles traveled, population density, car ownership, and transit costs. Good stuff!

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