The real estate bubble that burst in 2006 took six additional years to entirely deflate, with home prices hitting rock bottom in 2012. But by 2014, home prices, on average, have returned to their pre-bubble norms.
And with the economy growing only modestly, and average incomes growing slowly, there isn’t a lot of reason to expect that home price appreciation will do much more than keep up with inflation in coming years. But that’s on a national level, and local markets behave much differently. In fact, there are several markets in America where analysts argue that–when compared to historical trends, incomes, and rents–current prices look overvalued.
Real estate data firm Trulia compiles statistics on both the amount of home price appreciation in each U.S. metro area as well as estimates of how overvalued homes are in those areas compared with historical trends. According to Trulia, even if many of these metro areas appear overvalued, there’s no reason to believe that we should expect a crash in prices anytime soon, as we’re nowhere near the price levels we saw in the years leading up to the housing crisis. At the same time, prospective buyers in these areas should realize that real estate is pricey there, and perhaps temper their expectations for price appreciation to continue indefinitely.
By combining Trulia’s estimates on cities with overvalued real estate with figures on the speed at which prices have gone up year-over-year as of August 2014, we present the 13 hottest real estate markets in the country: