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updated 3/23/2010 7:31:20 PM ET 2010-03-23T23:31:20

A new study shows that housing has become more affordable for nurses, teachers, police and other workers, but suggests homeownership remains out of their reach in many major markets.

The Center for Housing Policy said Wednesday incomes for many of the workers that communities rely on for vital services have not kept pace with the cost of housing.

That means many can't afford to buy a median-priced home in the cities they work in, even with mortgage interest rates at near historic lows and lower home prices.

The study also found workers in many markets can't afford rent payments for a two-bedroom apartment.

The findings are based on an analysis of housing costs in more than 200 markets and wages across more than 60 occupations.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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