House hunting in Charlotte? Here’s how much income you need to buy a home, says Zillow

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If you’re in the market for a new house, you’ll need a six-figure income to settle down in Charlotte.

In a recent report, Zillow revealed the income needed to comfortably afford a home in different metros across the country — and how just how much housing costs have changed over the last few years.

According to the report, the average income needed to comfortably afford a home in the U.S. is $106,000 — 80% more than what it was in 2020. To give context, a typical household only brings in about $81,000, Zillow researchers say.

Homebuyers in Charlotte need to make $111,051 to afford a mortgage, which is nearly double what it was four years ago:

  • Income needed to afford a mortgage in 2024: $111,051

  • Change in needed income since 2020: $55,239

  • Zillow home value index January 2024: $368,712

  • Monthly mortgage payment, 10% Down: $2,353

  • Years to save a 10% down payment: 9.2

“Housing costs have soared over the past four years as drastic hikes in home prices, mortgage rates and rent growth far outpaced wage gains,” said Orphe Divounguy, a senior economist at Zillow. “Buyers are getting creative to make a purchase pencil out, and long-distance movers are targeting less expensive and less competitive metros. Mortgage rates easing down has helped some, but the key to improving affordability long term is to build more homes.”

In comparison, Zillow says Pittsburgh, St. Louis and Detroit are the only major metros where the average U.S. income could get you a typical home. In other cities, you need to make at least $200,000.

Metros with the lowest income needed to afford a home

  • Pittsburgh: $58,232

  • Memphis: $69,976

  • Cleveland: $70,810

  • New Orleans: $74,048

  • Birmingham: $74,338

Metros with the highest income needed to afford a home

  • San Jose: $454,296

  • San Francisco: $339,864)

  • Los Angeles: $279,250

  • San Diego: $273,613

  • Seattle: $213,984

You can find more information and Zillow’s full report of housing costs online at

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