Los Angeles may have its Hollywood stars, Rodeo Drive boutiques and Brentwood mansions, but it's also home to millions of blue-collar workers employed in the area's aerospace, energy, shipping and warehousing industries.
While homes are a lot more affordable now than they were during the housing boom -- back then the median price was $530,000 and only 3% of the homes sold were considered affordable to median income families -- it's still a challenge for many of the area's residents to cover the cost of a mortgage.
Things are looking up, however. The unemployment rate has fallen by two percentage points over the past 12 months and home prices are starting to stabilize even further.
Source: National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index *The percentage of new and existing homes sold in that metro area that families earning the area's median income can afford based on standard mortgage underwriting criteria.
By Les Christie @CNNMoney - Last updated November 29 2012 02:02 PM ET