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Top Housing Markets From 2012

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Houston is the top real estate market for 2012

Which Housing Markets Will End 2012 on the Best Note?

As we look back on the year in housing, more of it was bad than good. Luckily, though, we have these five cities to give us reason to smile!

1. Houston

When you can sit around and legitimately argue that a city is “fiscal cliff-proof”, that’s a big deal! Big enough that Houston gets our nod for the city ending 2012 on the very best note. Heck, Houston STARTED 2012 on a good note! When we bid farewell to 2011, selling prices were on the rise in Houston – and they haven’t stopped since. As a result, builders in the area are feeling as confident right now as they have since before the housing bubble burst. That’s great news for buyers, who could soon have a crop of new homes to choose from, in addition to the existing ones that are on the market. The biggest thing working in Houston’s favor, though? It’s unemployment picture – or, lack thereof. Houstonians have steadier paychecks than people because so much of this city’s economy is based on oil and other energy sources. That means Houstonians have the freedom to head out and spend their paychecks on houses.

Local real estate info: San Francisco's real estate market

2. Seattle

There aren’t too many places that have seen bidding wars in the past few years, but Seattle is one of them! An incredibly-low inventory coupled with slightly-higher buyer interest over the past couple of months led to happy Seattle sellers. That race to the finish line earns Seattle our #2 spot on this list! That strong finish was just icing on the cake to a good 2012, though. In every month, Seattle’s median selling price was higher than the corresponding month in 2011. In November, the median selling price was $420,000 – a major improvement over $379,000 in November 2011! Thanks to eager buyers, the average Seattle home is spending a mere 30 days on the market. That need for speed can be stressful if you’re a buyer, but it’s music to a seller’s ears! In fact, it could be just what this city needs to convince more homeowners to put their properties up for sale in 2013.

Real estate outlook: First time home buyers outlook for 2013

3. San Antonio

It takes a special housing market to see a surge heading into the holiday season, but that’s exactly what happened in San Antonio back in October! And, since the Alamo City has a legitimate chance at breaking December sales records, it earns the #3 spot on our list. In fact, San Antonio’s housing market has been such an over-achiever this year that experts are forecasting it to exceed expectations for years to come. That’s why they’ve predicted it to be one of the fastest-growing metros in the country from now until 2017. Talk about a high note!

4. Phoenix

When a housing market can make the term “flipping” popular again (without jumping in a time machine and heading back to 2005), you can’t help but take notice. That’s why we’ve got Phoenix at #4 on our list! Phoenix has surprised real estate experts all year long – first with its median sale price increases, and now with the surge of investors that have descended on the city. All-cash transactions have actually become common here, and there are so many investors in town that it has started to kick-start other facets of the local economy!

5. Austin

Austin is a hub for giant companies like Dell, Facebook, Apple, and Google. So, you can count on lots of Austinites having a steady paycheck for quite some time! Plus, rent prices are off the charts in Austin – meaning that more people are looking at buying as a more cost-effective alternative. Right now, Austin homes are spending half as long on the market as they were in 2011.


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