US Real Estate: Best and Worst Areas

US Real Estate: Best and Worst Areas

Portland, Ore., Phoenix, Atlanta, Las Vegas and Minneapolis/St. Paul are the best metropolitan areas for homeowners, according to a new Bankrate.com report. Click here for the full list:

http://www.bankrate.com/finance/real-estate/best-worst-places-for-homeowners.aspx

Portland tops the list thanks to inexpensive homeowners’ insurance, few foreclosures and low energy costs. Strong home-price appreciation over the past five years is a common thread in Phoenix, Atlanta and Las Vegas’ top-five rankings. The Twin Cities’ best housing attributes are strong home-price appreciation and a dearth of foreclosures.

The study reviewed eight factors: home affordability; price appreciation; property taxes; homeowners’ insurance, energy and maintenance costs; foreclosures and how rapidly rents rose over the past six years for which data are available.

Hartford ranks last because of high carrying costs: it has above-average property tax, energy, homeowners’ insurance and maintenance fees. The New York City metro area is second-worst due to high property taxes, minimal home-price appreciation and expensive maintenance costs. Only Los Angeles (fourth-worst) prevented a northeastern sweep of the bottom five (Providence is third-worst and Buffalo is fifth from the rear).

“Major cities in the middle of the country did really well in this ranking,” said Bankrate.com analyst Claes Bell, CFA. “Out of the top 15 metro areas, only one is within 250 miles of an ocean. Homeowners in America’s largest coastal cities face a number of challenges, ranging from sky-high mortgage payments gobbling up an outsized portion of homeowners’ incomes to high property insurance rates, especially in hurricane-prone areas, and our ranking reflects that.”

Sources: ATTOM Data Solutions; Council for Community and Economic Research; Federal Housing Finance Agency; HomeAdvisor; National Association of Insurance Commissioners; National Association of Realtors

About Bankrate.com:

Bankrate.com provides consumers with the expert advice and tools needed to succeed throughout life’s financial journey. For over two decades, Bankrate.com has been a leading personal finance destination. The company offers award-winning editorial content, competitive rate information, and calculators and tools across multiple categories, including mortgages, deposits, credit cards, retirement, automobile loans, and taxes. Bankrate aggregates rate information from over 4,800 institutions on more than 300 financial products. With coverage of over 600 local markets, Bankrate generates rate tables in all 50 U.S. states. Bankrate develops and provides web services to more than 100 cobranded websites with online partners, including some of the most trusted and frequently visited personal finance sites on the internet, such as Comcast, Yahoo!, CNBC and Bloomberg. In addition, Bankrate licenses editorial content to more than 500 newspapers on a daily basis including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times.4

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