Realtors and builders alike are saying the same thing: This is the strongest housing market they’ve seen in decades. And homebuyers and homeowners are asking the same question: Can this continue or is this 2008 all over again?

Because housing is as strong as it has been since the 2008 housing bubble, it makes sense that many folks are nervous. The 2008 housing crash was one of the most financially disruptive events of the century.

People saw their net worth disappear, and foreclosures and short sales were on every block. The situation impacted every socioeconomic demographic — no one was immune.

So, what makes 2021 different? Most economists agree that this is no bubble. They’re looking at several key factors, low interest rates, historically high home prices, historically high wages and historically low unemployment. So, what does it all add up to?

Well, the National Association of Realtors takes those same numbers and calculates what’s called the housing affordability index. Basically, the number tells you what percentage of the population can afford to buy an average-priced home.

When the index is too low, it’s a warning sign that a market correction could be on its way. But for now, the Central Florida market isn’t too badly out of whack.

As of May, the local index was 125.15 percent. An index of 99 percent means that buyers earning the state-reported median income are 1 percent short of the income needed to purchase a median-priced home. Conversely, an index over 100 means that median-income earners make more than is necessary to qualify for a median-priced home.

All that said, and weighing all the charts, graphs and expert opinions out there, when I’m asked my opinion on where the market is headed, I just smile and say: “Sorry my crystal ball is in the shop.”