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Birmingham Pre Foreclosure Homes Helped Make City Affordable

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By : John Cutts    99 or more times read
Pre foreclosure homes in Birmingham have been helping make the city fairly affordable for home buyers, based on a study recently released by the Center for Housing Policy.

In the study, Birmingham was 111th among 210 markets ranked by median home sales prices in 2009 from the highest to the lowest. The sales price median in Birmingham in 2009 was $144,300, up from the $135,400 median in 2008, when Birmingham ranked 134th.

The most expensive markets were San Francisco, with its $625,000 median price; San Jose, with its $465,000 price median; Honolulu, with its $450,000 median; Santa Ana, with its $435,000 price median; and Santa Cruz, with its $431,000 median.

Foreclosures in Birmingham also helped control the rise in rental rates in the area in 2009. Out of the 210 metro areas, Birmingham ranked 144th based on average monthly rents. For two-bedroom units, the average rent in Birmingham in 2009 was $735, an increase from the average rental rate of $698 in 2008, when the city ranked 140th and when Birmingham pre foreclosure homes were not yet a significant factor in the housing market.

Again, California cities topped other cities with their rental rates. San Francisco again was the most expensive rental market with its average monthly rental of $1,760. Honolulu was second with $1,704; Santa Cruz was third with $1,656; Santa Ana was fourth with $1,594; and Suffolk County of New York was fifth with $1,592.

According to John McIlwain, chairperson for the housing division of the Urban Land Institute, despite the significant percentage of jobs contributed by green industries, a significant number of green economy employees cannot yet afford to buy or rent homes in some cities that have green programs.

McIlwain called on state and local governments to develop policies that ensure the viability of affordable residential village estates so that workers do not have to endure long commutes to work, high transportation costs, traffic congestions and unhealthy environments.

In February, the average price for the 789 homes sold was $149,204, a drop of 13 percent from the price average for homes sold in February 2009. The sales price median was $131,900, an uptick of 1.5 percent from the price median in February 2009.

Without sales of Birmingham pre foreclosure homes and foreclosed properties, the home sales price median in February 2009 would have been higher at $196,703.
John Cutts has been educated in the finer points of the foreclosure market over 5 years.

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