Ground Up

The Daily Record's real estate blog

Report: Baltimore among nation’s most undervalued cities

Baltimore remains one of the most undervalued cities in the nation and offers new homebuyers significant value for dollars spent on housing, according to one financial technology company.

SmartAsset’s new list of the top 10 undervalued cities in the United States has Baltimore at No. 4, up one position from a year ago. The company used data including price-per-square-foot, percent of residents with a college degree, crime rate and entertainment establishment density for 200 cities to determine its rankings.

Charm City followed Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and Newark in the company’s rankings.

Using information from Zillow, SmartAsset found the average home cost $90.40 per square foot in Baltimore,but SmartAsset said its model found the home price in Baltimore should be $241-per-square-foot.

Just last month, however, SmartAsset found that it was a better deal for home owners to commute to work in Baltimore while owning a home in the suburbs.

Housing prices in Maryland have been surging to levels not seen since before the housing bubble burst about a decade ago. The median sales price in June for a home in the Baltimore metro area, according to data provided by MarketStats by ShowingTime based on listing activity from Bright MLS, reached $285,000. That’s a 2 percent increase from the year before and the highest median price since June 2007. 

Home prices in the city were up 3.7 percent year over year. But the median price of $170,000 was by far the lowest of the six jurisdictions in the Baltimore metro area. The number of new listings in the city also fell by nearly 1 percent.

Baltimore, however, has the highest property taxes in the region, at 2.248 per $100 of assessed value — nearly twice that of neighboring Baltimore County. The city still struggles with violent crime, surpassing 300 murders annually in recent years. It’s unemployment rate of 5.8 percent, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is also the highest in the region.

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