While affordability remained a top hurdle for homebuyers in recent years, tales of accelerated home price appreciation wane. Property values are steadying and even declining in major cities, and the housing market heads for what is considered "normalcy" for the first time in two decades, according to Zillow.
At a national level, "real" house prices ticked down 0.72% and 0.9%, respectively, on an annual and monthly basis in April, according to a First American Financial Corp. analysis of home values, factoring in local wages and mortgage rates in large cities. A combination of more affordable house values, a better economy and lower mortgage rates together are assisting in a more favorable climate for house shoppers.
While certain markets, like Providence, R.I., realized a real home price growth rate of 5.92% from last year, the pace slowed significantly from the start of the year when the city saw values shoot up 17% in January. Conversely, other housing markets saw home prices drop as much as 8.62% from last April.
From Seattle to Pittsburgh, here's a look at the 12 best housing markets for homebuyer purchasing power.
The data, from the First American Real House Price Index, measures annual home price changes, taking local wages and mortgage rates into account "to better reflect consumers' purchasing power and capture the true cost of housing."
The April 2019 data is ranked by smallest year-over-year changes in RHPI for cities where the current value is less than 100 (an RHPI reading of 100 is equal to housing conditions in January 2000).
No. 12 Pittsburgh, Pa.
Year-over-year RHPI: 0.05% RHPI: 60.96 Median sale price: $139,800
No. 11 Hartford, Conn.
Year-over-year RHPI: -0.01% RHPI: 77.48 Median sale price: $204,000
/itsallgood - Fotolia
No. 10 Jacksonville, Fla.
Year-over-year RHPI: -0.10% RHPI: 90.17 Median sale price: $185,100
Dallas City Skyline at dusk, sunset. Dallas Texas downtown, business center. Commercial zone in big city. Dallas City view from Reunion Tower.
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No. 9 Dallas, Texas
Year-over-year RHPI: -0.57% RHPI: 97.05 Median sale price: $263,302
Memphis, Tennessee, USA downtown skyline.
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No. 8 Memphis, Tenn.
Year-over-year RHPI: -0.69% RHPI: 54.51 Median sale price: $129,875
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No. 7 Chicago, Ill.
Year-over-year RHPI: -0.80% RHPI: 64.10 Median sale price: $222,303
Old Post Office Pavilion
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No. 6 Washington, D.C.
Year-over-year RHPI: -0.83% RHPI: 86.04 Median sale price: $372,864
A pool stands where the terrorist attack took place in Oklahoma
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No. 5 Oklahoma City, Okla.
Year-over-year RHPI: -1.19% RHPI: 69.05 Median sale price: $148,313
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No. 4 St. Louis, Mo.
Year-over-year RHPI: -1.20% RHPI: 63.02 Median sale price: $161,563
San Diego, California, USA downtown city skyline.
SeanPavonePhoto - stock.adobe.com
No. 3 San Diego, Calif.
Year-over-year RHPI: -2.25% RHPI: 95.20 Median sale price: $553,563
Sunrise over City of Portland Oregon and Mount Hood Covered in Low Fog Banks
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No. 2 Portland, Ore.
Year-over-year RHPI: -4.52% RHPI: 95.39 Median sale price: $364,825
Downtown Seattle as seen from the Kerry park in the evening
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No. 1 Seattle, Wash.
Year-over-year RHPI: -6.29% RHPI: 88.24 Median sale price: $460,687
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