Across the country, home values have fallen since 2006-in some areas by as much as 50 percent. But if you have good credit and plan on buying a home, it may be a good time to bag a real estate bargain. Last week, ABC’s Good Morning America teamed up with the real estate website Zillow.com to figure out the top 10 places to buy. Zillow looked at four factors to determine the top 10.
Affordability: How many years of income does the median home cost? A medium home cost of 2.5 years of salary, for example, would get a better rank than a city where homes cost 4.5 years of salary.
Unemployment: Low unemployment is usually a reliable guage of the health and stability of the local economy. Change in unemployment over the past year was also taken into account. This is an indicator of the direction that the local economy is moving. If the unemployment rate in a particular city dropped 2 percent in the past year, it will rank better than a city which experienced no change.
Foreclosures: Zillow also analyzed the percentage of homes in each marketplace that have fallen into foreclosure in the past 12 months. The lower the percentage, the healthier the local real estate market is assumed to be.
Price Increases: Zillow looked at areas that have seen an increase in home values over the past quarter of the past year.
Based upon this criteria, cities all over the country were examined. Rochester made the top 10 (and even the top 5) as the #3 housing market in the country. Rochester is one of the most affordable markets with a median home value of $121,000. 91 percent of Rochester area homes sold for a gain in October 2010, which is an indication of a healthy market. Compare that to 70 percent nationwide. The unemployment rate in Rochester is also falling, down half a percent this past year.
A full list of the top 10 (three of which are in upstate New York):
1. Utica, N.Y.
2. Oklahoma City, Okla.
3. Rochester, N.Y.
4. Pittsburgh, Pa.
5. Tulsa, Okla.
6. Albany, N.Y.
7. Lancaster, Pa.
8. Madison, Wis.
9. Green Bay, Wis.
10. Lincoln, Neb.
If you are thinking about buying a new home, now is the time. And the talented agents at Nothnagle Realtors are here to help you. By hiring a Nothnagle agent, you are hiring a negotiations expert, pricing specialist and overall trusted advisor with the ability to meet all of your unique real estate needs. Click here to find an agent who fits your needs!