SI housing is no longer so affordable

May 04, 2011 04:03PM

Staten Island has grown faster than any other borough over the last two decades, making 24 percent and 26 percent gains, respectively, in population and new homes, according to a new report by Center for an Urban Future cited by the Wall Street Journal. But as the island saturates and housing costs rise, many residents are finding the borough to be different from the one that was known to be a haven for first-time homebuyers just 20 years ago. Almost half of all Staten Islanders spend at least 35 percent of their income on housing, compared with just 30 percent of residents 20 years ago. “In 1990, this was clearly the borough where young families can go and pretty easily buy your first home,” said Jonathan Bowles, one of the authors of the report. “[Now] it’s much more difficult to afford that home on Staten Island.” As a result, despite the population growth, there are fewer five-year-olds living in the borough now than there were in 2000. [WSJ]