The collapse of the U.S. housing market about seven years ago was a major factor in plunging the nation and much of the world into the Great Recession. But real estate prices are now recovering, along with the rest of the economy.
A report by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/First American Leading Markets Index (LMI) found that during the first quarter of this year, 68 of the estimated 360 metro area markets in the U.S. have either returned to, or have exceeded, their prerecession levels of economic and housing activity. It also found that 68 percent of these areas have shown year-over-year improvement.
"The markets are continuing to make gains," NAHB Chairman Tom Woods said in a press statement. "A strengthening economy and low interest rates should spur the release of pent-up demand and keep housing moving forward this year."
That pent-up demand has also pushed housing prices in some states to unexpectedly high levels. FindTheHome.com has published a guide to the most expensive states for buying a home using data from its real estate market trends to determine median home sale prices in each state. The rankings used reflect median home prices as of January 2015, although FindTheHome now has data as of February.