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Pittsburgh Named 4th Best Market in 2011 by Zillow.com

By Ryan Cox | January 29, 2011

Zillow.com recently announced it’s 10 best places to buy a home in 2011. While national home values have fallen 26 percent since the peak of 2006, it’s understandable why many people are worrisome about entering the real estate market. What if we haven’t bottomed out yet?

There is some good news though. Even in a somewhat volatile housing market, there are many cities where the local economy is strong. Affordability is at an all-time high, home values are stable, and these markets are ripe with opportunity. Pittsburgh, PA is a perfect example, coming in at #4 on Zillow.com’s list of 10 best places to buy a home in 2011.

pittsburgh
View of Pittsburgh from Mount Washington

Here is an excerpt from the Zillow report, detailing the four factors it used to determine the best places for buyers in 2011:

  • Affordability - We looked at how affordable homes are for residents, compared with income, and how the current affordability compares with historic levels.
  • Unemployment – We looked at areas with low unemployment as a proxy for the health and stability of the local economy. We also looked at unemployment trends over the past year.
  • Foreclosure Frequency – We used Zillow monthly data on foreclosure statistics. A lower rate of foreclosures suggests a healthier real estate market.
  • Price Appreciation – We looked for home value stability. It’s more attractive for a prospective buyer to buy in a city where the market feels stable and will continue to appreciate. Because so many markets are still declining, ones that have only modest declines in the past year are more attractive than ones with bigger drops because there’s lower volatility.

StockMarketsReview also named Pittsburgh the most vibrant Real Estate market in the country just yesterday. Part of the reason being, Pittsburgh has built a fairly recession proof economic base - one where jobs in education, medical, and other stable sectors are a large percentage of the infrastructure. In short, the city is a model for many others to follow.

Here is the top 10 list on order:

  1. Utica, NY
  2. Oklahoma City, OK
  3. Rochester, NY
  4. Pittsburgh, PA
  5. Tulsa, OK
  6. Albany, NY
  7. Lancaster, PA
  8. Madison, WI
  9. Green Bay, WI
  10. Lincoln, NE

Pittsburgh is one of the few cities where home prices are not just increasing on a yearly basis, but on a quarterly basis too. Showcased in a ABC News video Zillow reported that half of the homes in Pittsburgh are increasing in value. With the median home price of $110,300, a strong working economy, and home values that continue to tick upward ahead of the national average -- Pittsburgh is a tremendous place to consider moving!

They do have the Steelers in Super Bowl 45 next week too you know!

heinz field
A view of Pittsburgh from the cheap seats at Heinz Field
Ryan is an entrepreneur. You've probably heard (or read) him talk about "hustle". He is the founder and CMO of @StatsSquared, an analytics company that recently won Indianapolis Startup Weekend, placed second in the Global Startup Battle, and then won the ITMartini competition. He has two startup projects: @Schindigs and @Tag2Do. During the day (rim shot) he does SEO consulting for @DeepRipples and manages a few clients under his own consulting. He helps businesses leverage internet marketing, Facebook, and Twitter, and provides insight on cutting edge technologies across several sectors.
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