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Posted by Diane Brennan on Sunday, June 7th, 2015 at 9:49pm.

Housing affordability is on the rise and that means the Phoenix metro area too, giving more Americans a chance to own their own homes.  If you're buying or selling a home in the Phoenix area, it's good news.

The good news comes as National Homeownership Month gets under way in this month of June.

A new report from the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity points to lower interest rates and home prices for the boost in housing affordability across the country.

According to the Index, more than 66 percent of new and existing homes sold between January and March were sold to families earning the U.S. median income of $65,800.

The national median home price also declined from $215,000 in the fourth quarter to $210,000 in the first quarter, making homes a little more affordable for many.  

The average mortgage interest also fell from 4.29 percent to 4.03 percent in the same period.

It’s a great time for consumers to buy homes said NAHB Chairman Tom Woods in a statement.

“Both first-time and move-up buyers can take advantage of these favorable market conditions and start building their American Dream,” he added.

Low downpayment programs offered by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are also giving first-time home buyers with qualifying mortgages a little more traction on the path to home ownership. 

These lenders are now offering mortgages with as little as 3 percent downpayment.

For most home buyers, the benefits of home ownership can be seen in in their first year of owning a home. Being able to deduct mortgage interest and property taxes from taxable income can result in thousands of dollars in savings every year. 

Woods also touts the benefits home ownership can have on families and local communities with home building increasing the property tax base that supports local schools and communities.

He added that it also provides “a solid foundation for family and personal achievement.”

Join Realtor Diane Brennan for That Real Estate Show Sundays at 8 a.m. on KTAR News 92.3 FM.

By Sloane Kingston, Contributing Editor

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