Markets

Reports vary on Toledo area housing market

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  • The bright spot in WalletHub’s assessment of the housing market in the Toledo area was affordability. That fit well with SmartAsset’s assessment.

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    Mangas

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Toledo is near the bottom of a list of the 300 best and worst real estate markets for 2017, but it is in the top 10 markets where people can buy the most home for the buck, two conflicting reports show.

Personal finance website WalletHub.com compiled 21 metrics into a composite score that put the city at 273rd out of 300 cities. In a separate list of midsize cities, Toledo ranked 90th out of 98.

Both rankings are measures of the city and not the metro area.


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The bright spot in WalletHub’s assessment of the housing market in the Toledo area was affordability. That fit well with SmartAsset’s assessment.


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But also released on Monday was a report by personal finance website SmartAsset.com that said Toledo ranked 10th on its list of 25 cities in the United States where a buyer can purchase the most square feet of a home with median income. In Toledo, buyers pay on average just $50 per square foot, which compares to $430 per square foot in New York City — the worst city for home buying, according to SmartAsset.com.

In its rankings, WalletHub had two components: a city’s real estate market, and its affordability and economic environment. Toledo’s market was 272nd while its environment was 185th.

The ongoing foreclosure activity in Toledo hurt its real estate market ranking. The city’s share of homes underwater (in which a home’s value is less than the amount of unpaid mortgage) was 22 percent, for a ranking of 262nd. Its foreclosure ranking was 252nd while its share of delinquent mortgages was 216th.

Affordability and economic environment was not much better. Job growth was 253rd, unemployment was 280th, and the median credit score ranking was 262nd.

John Mangas, broker/​co-owner of Re/​Max Preferred Associates in Toledo, said there are pockets of real estate in the city of Toledo that are quite clearly not performing as well as other areas.

“But if you look at the Toledo metro area, or for that matter northwest Ohio, it’s a pretty bright spot. … Our region has really come a long way in the last five years,” Mr. Mangas said.

“Inventory is a challenge right now and it has been all year. To me, though, that means Toledo’s a desirable place and an attractive place where people want to be,” he added.

Toledo’s lone bright spot in the WalletHub assessment was housing affordability, where it ranked 11th.

That fit perfectly with SmartAsset’s assessment of Toledo buyers getting a lot of home for their money.

“What we’re seeing is that the size of home you’re able to get with that median household income is certainly much bigger than we see in most areas around the country,” said A.J. Smith, SmartAsset’s vice president of financial education.

SmartAsset used 2015 median income data from the U.S. Census Bureau, and combined it with square footage sales figures from real estate data firm Zillow.com to come up with average home value per square foot.

The website said a buyer in Toledo with the median Toledo income of $35,289 per year in 2015 could purchase a 705-square-foot home.

While Toledo buyers enjoy greater home-buying power, Ms. Smith echoed Mr. Mangas’ thoughts on home availability.

“That’s the question,” she said. “Can you find that size home that you want? Is that inventory there? That’s where this gets to have a little more to it.”

Contact Jon Chavez at jchavez@theblade.com or 419-724-6128.




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