New Jersey's high cost of living makes it very difficult to purchase a home. Bergen County, NJ is the highest among all markets in homeownership affordability and also happens to be the most populous county in NJ. The median home price in Bergen County is $481,250. According to a 2007 estimate by the US Census Bureau, the median income of a family is just shy of $97,000. If you assume that not more than 28% of the household income should be used for the mortgage payment, that would mean that it should not be higher than $2,263 per month. Based on today's mortgage rates, that would equate to about a $375,000 mortgage. If you go back to the median home price in Bergen County of $481,250 and assume that a buyer is putting down 10%, you would be left with a loan amount of $433,125. This is $58,125 higher than what the median family income can afford. Although homeownership affordability has improved lately; taxes, insurance and household expenses are constantly rising still making it very difficult for the average family to own a home in Bergen County.