Lower prices make homes more affordable. The median price of a single family New Jersey home in the 3rd quarter of 2009 is 11 percent lower than in the 3rd quarter of 2008. The housing affordability index during the same time period increased by 22 percent. NAR's housing affordability index measures whether or not a typical family could qualify for a mortgage loan on a median-priced, existing single-family home. Increasing levels of affordability mean a home purchase is within reach for more New Jerseyans than the same time the year before.