Job creation and low unemployment rates are expected to drive up home prices in cities like Tampa this year.
After years of dramatic price changes and sales stats that have vacillated from red-hot to moribund and back again, you could be forgiven for forgetting what a typical housing market looks like. This year, though, you may finally be in for a refresher course.
Researchers are predicting an average price gain of 4.2% — respectable, but a far cry from the 11% average posted in 2013, according to data firm CoreLogic. At the same time, the shortage of for-sale homes should ease, as more would-be sellers get off the fence and construction of new houses continues to pick up.
Of course, in reality no market is truly average. Some areas are predicted to grow at more than twice the nationwide rate, while a few will barely tick up. Then there’s the specter of interest rate hikes, which could hit some places harder than others.
To sort out what you can expect, MONEY zeroed in on four common types of markets, each with its own quirks. We’ll help you determine which one most closely fits your area, and what moves you should make in 2014.