The 5 Best and 5 Worst Housing Markets
There are definitely changes in the US housing markets but the situation is different in various states and counties. The market is picking up again for sure but not at the same rate and not everywhere. In fact, this report shows that it is pretty much a mixed market.
There are five housing markets that stand out as the best and worst in the country. The list follows data that has recently been released by the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Apart from price changes, the stability of housing markets as indicated by median listing prices is also important.
Detroit is tops in the cheapest housing market. According to NAR data from the first quarter of 2012, the metropolitan area of Detroit-Warren-Livonia, Michigan is the cheapest in all of the country. Median prices here average just $53,100 which is a 2.8 percent decline from one year ago.
This should be no surprise considering the problems the region has experienced. Once the Rust Belt economy declined when the auto sector went down, related sectors went down too. Many jobs were lost and the city almost went down in insolvency.
Another cheap market is in Toledo, Ohio where the median price is $78,600 which is a 2.3 percent jump from 2011. The third cheapest market is in Lansing-East Lansing in Michigan where the median price stands at $79,100 having gone up by 6.2 percent since the previous year.
South Bend-Mishawaka, Indiana also has cheap housing markets that are well priced at $83,400 which is up by 1 percent since 2011. The situation is the same in Decatur, Illinois where despite a 6.4 percent jump since last year, the median price is $86,600.
Highest priced markets
It is a different story in other areas where the housing markets are vibrant. The leader in the pack is Honolulu where the median price stands at $602,300. The area is tops as a tourist destination and with the warm weather, it is no surprise that many people are keen on owning a piece of this paradise.
Honolulu is also the area that has the lowest real estate owned or REO saturation in the country. REO properties are those that have been foreclosed but have not yet been disposed of in the auctioneer's market. Their ownership thus reverts to the lender who facilitated the purchase by giving a home loan or to the government agency. The upward trend of high median prices seems set to continue. NAR statistics indicate that prices in the area were up by 6.5 percent in the same period of the previous year.
After Honolulu is San-Jose Sunnyvale-Santa Clara in California. The median price here is $ 552,800 which is a 0.1 percent since 2011. Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine also in California is not far off with a median price of $ 498, 600 which is a 3.7 percent decline since last year.
San Francisco-Oakland -Fremont in the same state is ranked fourth. The median price here is $ 488, 400 which is a decline of 3.7 percent since last year. The fifth most expensive market is New York-White-Wayne Plains in New Jersey where the median price is $439, 900 which represents a $6.3 decline since the previous year.
One interesting fact about housing markets is that in regard to rebound in the market, it is not the top markets that have seen the biggest gains even if they happen to be the most stable. It is for this reason that the NAR list of the biggest gainers is concentrated in Florida which was quite hard hit with low home values and low demand at the height of the recession.
Cape Coral-Fort Myers in Florida is tops in housing price gains thanks to a 28.1 percent jump from the first quarter of 2011 to the one of 2012. This makes the metropolitan area of Miami the housing market that is the fastest growing. As as June 2012, the median price in the area stood as $117,600.
Other areas that are rapidly closing the gap to catch up with the top markets are Grand Rapids in Michigan and Palm-Bay Melbourne-Titusville in Florida. The areas have had growth of 19 percent and 16.9 percent respectively from year to year to reach median prices of $ 96,500 and $ 104,600.
Erie, Pa is not far behind with a growth rate of $ 16.6 percent that has raised the median price at $ 110,200. It is followed by Tampa-St.Petersburg-Clearwater also in Florida. The growth here has been at 16.1 percent and this has raised the median price to $ 131,900.
In other areas, there have been sharp declines. Kingston New York tops this list where home values have fallen by 22 percent to rest at $156,800. Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, Conn, Mobile, Ala, Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Ga and Rockford, Ill have lost between 11.7 and 18 percent.