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A new study by Trulia has found that a growing number of Americans cannot afford to live in the same communities where they work. Professionals who have the hardest time affording homes near their jobs are teachers, first responders, restaurant workers, and computer programmers. Affordability is defined in this study as a cost of housing that takes up no more than 31% of a monthly paycheck.

California has the most drastic examples of housing affordability struggles for well-paid tech workers. In San Francisco, only 5% of homes for sale are affordable to a computer programmer making $122,993, the local median wage in their field. However, Trulia notes that barely half of programmers in many cities can afford median-priced homes, including Chicago, Charleston, S.C., Minneapolis, and Newark, New Jersey.

Teachers and first responders, who make lower salaries and have seen little wage growth as the cost of living has risen, face even greater challenges. "Teachers are worse off in nearly all metros covered in this study," noted Cheryl Young, Trulia's senior economist. "More than one-quarter of the 93 metros saw a double-digit decrease in the share of homes affordable to teachers.”

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