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5 Cities Where Home Prices Hit New Lows

Seattle

  • Home prices compared to July 2007 peak: -33%

Seattle managed to dodge the housing downturn for years, but ongoing, gradual price declines have brought home values back down to 2004 levels. In total, prices have dropped 33% since the area’s peak in 2007, according to S&P/Case-Shiller, with much of those losses occurring over the past two years.

A variety of factors have contributed to home prices falling, including rapid appreciation during the boom years, high foreclosures in some pockets of the city, and tight lending standards, says Eve Anthony, a real estate broker in Seattle. The biggest hit, she says, came after Washington Mutual – which was headquartered in Seattle – collapsed in 2008. Job losses followed, and individuals who wanted a mortgage faced two problems: tighter requirements (as was the case nationally) and fewer local lenders to choose from, she says.

Experts say buyer demand hasn’t recovered since.

As of late, foreclosures have been rising. Roughly 12,820 homes received foreclosure filings (the first step in a foreclosure process) last month, up  18% from a year ago, according to RealtyTrac.

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Queen Anne Hill and the Space Needle
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