City: Macon among nation’s most-affordable housing markets

In the market for a four-bedroom home? You might not find a better deal than in Macon.

That’s because Macon has one of the nation’s 10 most-affordable housing markets, according to a study released Wednesday by Coldwell Banker.

The real estate firm’s annual survey of the price of a 2,200-square-foot home with four bedrooms, two-and-a-half baths and an attached garage puts Macon at No. 7 on the most-affordable list. According to the study, that home costs an average of $139,007 here, compared to $2.1 million in La Jolla, Calif., the most expensive market.

Dorothy Mitchell, managing broker of Coldwell Banker SSK Realtors in Macon, said she was a little surprised to see that Macon ranked so well in the survey, even though residents who relocate from bigger cities often comment that homes here are more affordable.

“They get more house for their money,” Mitchell said.

Rather than compare median prices like most housing reports, the survey provides an “apples-to-apples” comparison of similar homes in 310 U.S. markets, according to a Coldwell Baker news release.

Jim Gillespie, president and CEO of Coldwell Banker Real Estate, said in the release that an intriguing finding in the survey was that 30 percent of the markets showed this type of home to be below $200,000, “illustrating the opportunity to take advantage of price declines, interest rate levels and increased selection of homes.”

The affordability of housing is just one reason Macon is “a great place to live,” Mitchell said.

“We’re at the center of the state. We have rail, water, the interstates,” Mitchell said. “There’s a lot going on in Macon, with the theaters, museums, the different varieties of churches. Macon has a lot to offer, and we don’t have the traffic of the big city.”

The news release about the survey notes that Macon is “hometown to many legendary soul and blues acts like Otis Redding, and home of the Georgia Music Hall of Fame.”

To contact writer Rodney Manley, call 744-4623.