Has Staten Island housing market become unaffordable for first-time buyers?

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Phil Mondiello, 29, has been saving for more than 10 years to buy a starter home.

Still living in Eltingville with his family, he has no student loans. He says he has great credit, owns his own car, and has been “smart” with his money.

“Every year, I’ve been saving up and saving up for a simple three-bedroom house, and every year I need more money for the down payment,” said Mondiello, who said his girlfriend, Lindsey Bedford, is saving as well.

After searching for a home, Mondiello realized he likely has to spend $550,000 for a three-bedroom house on the South Shore that likely “needs work.”

But these homes often get sold in “bidding wars,” said Mondiello, who is in the electrics distribution business.

“I have been saving aggressively for the last 10 years of my life. …But it has come to the point where it’s going to take every dime I have to afford a house. Plus, I have to save for retirement, so am I also going to be able to keep up with a monthly mortgage?”

And Mondiello isn’t alone.

“It’s very tough for first-time buyers because they generally have little to put down and need higher mortgages,” said Ken Gonzalez, a real estate attorney and partner in the law firm of Gonzalez & Merlino in Castleton Corners. Read More Here

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