NEW YORK, Oct. 24, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The San Francisco Bay Area is the best U.S. metropolitan area for building wealth, according to a new Bankrate.com (NYSE: RATE) report. The study ranked 21 large metro areas in five categories: savable income, human capital, debt burden, homeownership and access to financial services. Click here for more information:
The nation's highest savable income is a big part of San Francisco's #1 overall ranking. The average Bay Area resident can sock away $16,657 per year, almost twice the national average, after subtracting local expenses from incomes. While it's a very expensive place to live, there are plenty of high-paying jobs, so residents are able to keep their non-mortgage debts low (5th-lowest among the 21 markets) and their credit scores high (2nd-highest).
Minneapolis/St. Paul is second-best overall (aided by the lowest average unemployment rate over the past five years), Washington, D.C. is third (only San Franciscans are able to save more), St. Louis is fourth (it offers the best access to financial services) and Detroit is fifth (it has the highest homeownership rate and the lowest non-mortgage debt burden).
Riverside/San Bernardino, Calif. came in last overall and in four subcategories: GDP per capita, average unemployment rate, average credit score and bank branches per 100,000 residents. Miami is the second-worst place to get rich (subtracting its average expenses from its average income results in a loss of $3,613 per year, worst in the nation by far). Tampa, Atlanta and Houston are third-, fourth- and fifth-worst, respectively.
"Different metro areas affect households' abilities to amass wealth in different ways," said Bankrate.com analyst Claes Bell, CFA. "In some metro areas, like San Francisco, homeownership can be prohibitively expensive, but higher-than-average salaries can help residents stash more money away in tax-advantaged retirement accounts. On the other hand, Minneapolis-area residents don't earn as much, but the area's affordable housing and recovering real estate market provide opportunities to build wealth over the long term through home equity."
External sources: ATTOM Data Solutions, Experian, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, National Association of Realtors, Pew Research Center, S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Department of Education
Bankrate.com provides consumers with the expert advice and tools needed to succeed throughout life's financial journey. For over two decades, Bankrate.com has been a leading personal finance destination. The company offers award-winning editorial content, competitive rate information, and calculators and tools across multiple categories, including mortgages, deposits, credit cards, retirement, automobile loans, and taxes. Bankrate aggregates rate information from over 4,800 institutions on more than 300 financial products. With coverage of over 600 local markets, Bankrate generates rate tables in all 50 U.S. states. Bankrate develops and provides web services to more than 100 cobranded websites with online partners, including some of the most trusted and frequently visited personal finance sites on the internet, such as Comcast, Yahoo!, CNBC and Bloomberg. In addition, Bankrate licenses editorial content to more than 500 newspapers on a daily basis including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times.
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