Rental vacancy rates for all new homes are rising at the fastest pace in five years, a sign that the nation’s housing market is overheating.
The National Association of Realtors said Friday that the median rental price for a single-family home in Georgia has climbed to $1.4 million, up 15.3% from a year ago.
Meanwhile, the median home value has fallen by nearly 10% since the start of the year to $927,000.
That means that the typical buyer of a new home is spending an average of more than $2 million a year on property taxes.
But the number of renters, who are mostly young adults, is falling as well, to 2.4% from 3.2% in February.
That’s a sign of a housing bubble that has already burst.
The NAR said that more than 1 million Americans currently live in homes that are less than half of the median value.
The group is concerned about what happens to young families, who will face higher housing costs and will be saddled with mortgages that will grow more expensive.
“If we don’t start making things easier for people to buy homes, then we’re going to have a huge housing crisis in the United States,” said Robert Steinberg, an NAR economist.
“This is a crisis that will impact every family that has ever lived in the country.”
The housing market in the South has also been on a tear lately.
In March, Georgia saw the highest rate of home sales in nearly a decade, with a record of 2,914 new sales, more than any other state.
The state is also in the middle of a drought, with several areas reporting their dryest February on record.
The weather also could be driving up prices.
The average price of a home in the state jumped 18.3%, the most in more than five years.
Nationwide, the average price for homes has risen 2.7% this year, according to the NAR.
It is the fourth straight month that prices have jumped, and it is the first time since October that home sales have exceeded new home sales for the first three months of this year.
But while some homeowners are feeling the pinch, many are still making good money.
The median household income in Georgia rose to $51,000 in February from $43,000 a year earlier, according, the NARP.
That is about the same as the national average.
Still, the state has a long way to go to get back to where it was in early 2014.
While home prices have risen faster in Georgia than nationally, the share of people earning less than $50,000 per year fell to 8.7%, the lowest level since the year 2000, according the NARB.
“The trend is clear, and that is that housing affordability is now a critical driver of the American economy,” Steinberg said.
The national average of home prices is $1,719,000, according a report by the National Association for Realtor.
The U.S. median household wage is $51.36 an hour, according data from the U.K. It has also fallen to a near-record low of $51 in March.
“We are going to see housing prices rise, we are going of course to see incomes fall, we will see some of the other effects that are associated with this recession but there is no denying that the housing market has been overheating,” Steinburg said.
“It’s been the most overheating market in years, and we’ve been dealing with that for a long time.”
He added that the government could do more to help homeowners who are struggling with rising costs.
The Obama administration is looking at new ways to encourage home buyers to sell, such as giving them cash back in the form of a mortgage loan, or encouraging people to refinance their mortgages with low-cost loans.
The housing finance industry, meanwhile, has begun to react to the rising prices by increasing rates.
On Friday, the Federal Reserve announced that it would start raising interest rates to help slow the growth of the housing sector.
But Steinberg noted that many people aren’t getting any help from the government.
“Some people are paying $3,000 for a $2,400 house, and some are paying less than that,” he said.