California

Housing affordability drops steeply in Butte County after Camp Fire

These are some of the issues behind California’s housing crisis

California's housing crisis is due in large part to a lack of supply, particularly when it comes to affordable housing, and it is hitting low-income individuals the hardest.
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California's housing crisis is due in large part to a lack of supply, particularly when it comes to affordable housing, and it is hitting low-income individuals the hardest.

The gap between how much people earn and the cost of buying a house is already stretched in California.

Although affordability decreased in 15 counties in California compared to the same period last year, few places have seen as steep a drop than Camp Fire-ravaged Butte County, according to data from the firm ATTOM Data Solutions.

Butte County fell 17 places – more than any other county in the state – on the firm’s affordability index, which measures how much it would cost for an average income earner to buy a house. Much like the rest of California, the median sales price of a house in Butte County has been rising for years but surged by 17 percent in the last six months.

The Camp Fire killed 86 people last November, burning through 153,000 acres and nearly 19,000 homes and buildings. Immediately after the fire residents fled for nearby Chico and flooded the housing market in that city, including the mayor of Paradise.

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