2014 saw continued strengthening in the American real estate markets, with modest price increases reflecting improving demand. US property portal Zillow reported an average home value of $178,400 at the end of Q1 2015, predicting an increase of 2.6% by the end of the year.
3 in 10,000 US homes are foreclosed; having a major impact on home values in recent years and expected to continue to influence property prices in the medium-term. Underwater mortgages have also remained an issue for many homeowners, with more than 16.9% now owing more than their home is worth.
It continues to be a sellers' market in many areas of America but that doesn't necessarily mean there isn't value in US property. Zillow's senior economist Skylar Olsen said: "We are heading toward better balance. Buyers will be able to take a little more time this year compared to last year".
According to Zillow the top housing markets for buyers in the US are Philadelphia, Chicago and Cleveland, due to strong inventory and property remaining on the market for longer, giving buyers more bargaining power.
Zillow have identified the top 10 US buyers' markets where properties are selling for nearly 4% less than the list price on average. In sellers' markets, the average negotiated discount is less than 1%.
To calculate the rankings, Zillow analysed sale-to-list price ratios, the number of price reductions and days on the market in metro areas across America. "Where the sale-to-list price ratio is low and discounts are high, many listings go through formal price cuts and it generally takes longer to sell homes," Olsen added.
The 10 Best US Housing Markets for Buyers
- Miami-Fort Lauderdale