According to the NAR (National Association of Realtors) the average price of a starter home has rose $23, 500 nationally in the past year. To even apply for a mortgage your income needs to exceed $47,952 a year, but the median income of a typical first-time buyer is only $32,781. That does not include the 10% down payment. To add to the problem the interest rates have also gone up from 5.53 percent to 6.3 percent. This may not sound that bad, but it adds about $100 a month to a $999 mortgage payment. I am not happy about this at all, because my husband is preparing to be a high school teacher and we all know what their income is like.