How Healthy is Your Local Market?

by Rob Wicker

How does your city’s real estate market and general economic health compare to the nation as a whole? Money Magazine’s April issue lists four key economic factors with instructions to find local information. (We’ve linked them below for you.)

1. Unemployment Rate: national average: 9.7%
Find local info: BLS.gov
Why: less unemployment means fewer homes in foreclosure

2. Foreclosure Rate: national average: 2.2%
Find local info: – RealtyTrac/Trends– search for your city
Why: fewer foreclosures means a healthier market

3. Price-to-Rent Ratio: national average: 10.9
Find info for major metropolitan areas: CNNMoney.com/Rent
Why: prices are likely to continue to fall if owning a home costs more than renting

4. Affordability Index: national average: 71%
Find local info: NAHB.org (Excel Spreadsheet)
Why: markets are more affordable at higher percentage points

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