Trulia's heat-map of U.S.'s best- and worst towns for recovery since the Great Recession.

Trulia data analyst Felipe Chacon offers a thorough geography and math look at winners and losers--in terms of metro areas--since the post-Great Recession recovery got underway.

The bullet-point top line findings are, in some cases, more than slightly surprising. Chacon writes:

  • Whether you’re a renter or an owner, strong gains in the economy have helped North Carolina cities stand out as being a strong area for both renters and owners since 2012. 
  • New Orleans’ struggles with anemic job and wage growth have hampered home value appreciation. Meanwhile, the Crescent City’s available housing pool has declined faster than the national average, making it more expensive and difficult to find places for rent
  • Cities hardest hit by the recession — Las Vegas, Detroit and Sarasota, Fla., among them — haven’t been particularly favorable for either owners or renters. 
  • San Francisco Bay Area cities as well as places like Denver, Seattle, and Houston, driven by consistently strong labor market fundamentals, have been great places to have bought a home in 2012 – but what’s surprising is that despite rising rents, these market’s strong job and wage growth have made them good places to rent relative to other cities.
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