Real estate market exclusive: Here are top cities to buy and sell homes

The U.S. housing market has been branded a seller’s paradise, with limited home inventories pushing up prices.

Actually, though, individual markets across the country vary widely. Strong economic and job growth, for example, drive buyer demand and home prices higher while a sluggish labor market tempers gains.

Similarly, tight housing supplies spur faster price increases and plentiful inventories keep a lid on values.

Western metro areas have both strong employment growth driven by the red-hot technology industry as well as onerous regulations that limit housing construction. The result: Sellers are in the driver’s seat, and homes are selling quickly and above asking price.

Buyers have more leverage in some northern and Mid-Atlantic metro areas that have higher unemployment rates or bigger housing stocks.

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