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East Coast And Illinois Have Highest Concentratons Of Housing Markets Vulnerable To Coronavirus Impact

Majority of the 50 Most Vulnerable Counties in Second Quarter of 2020 Located in States Spanning Connecticut through Florida and in Illinois; Chicago, New York City, Baltimore and Washington, D.C., areas Have Clusters of Counties in Top 50; West Region Less at Risk of Housing-Related Issues

ATTOM Data Solutions, curator of the nation’s premier property database and first property data provider of Data-as-a-Service (DaaS), released its second-quarter 2020 Special Report spotlighting county-level housing markets around the United States that are more or less vulnerable to the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. The report shows that areas most at risk in the second quarter sat on the East Coast and in northern Illinois – with clusters in the New York CityChicagoBaltimore and Washington, D.C., areas – while the West had the fewest.

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The report reveals that a stretch of states running from Connecticut through Florida, plus Illinois, had 43 of the 50 counties most vulnerable to the economic impact of the pandemic. They included 11 suburban counties around New York City, seven in the Chicago, IL area, five around Washington, D.C. and four around Baltimore, MD. The only four western counties were in California, with none in other West Coast or southwestern states.

The East Coast pattern continued a trend identified in the first-quarter 2020 report, with variations from state to state. The previous report found that New Jersey and Florida had 24 of the top 50 most at-risk counties, Maryland had two, Illinois five and California only one.

Markets are considered more or less at risk based on the percentage of homes currently facing possible foreclosure, the portion of homes with mortgage balances that exceed the estimated property value, and the percentage of local wages required to pay for major home ownership expenses.

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The conclusions are drawn from an analysis of the most recent home affordability, home equity and foreclosure reports prepared by ATTOM. Rankings are based on a combination of those three categories in 406 counties around the United States with sufficient data to analyze. Counties were ranked in each category, from lowest to highest, with the overall conclusion based on a combination of the three ranks. See below for the full methodology.

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The findings surface amid signs that home-price growth stalled across significant parts of the country in May 2020, with more expensive areas of the West among those getting hit hardest.

“Home-sales data from around the country is starting to show that eight years of price gains may be coming to an end amid the economic damage flowing from the virus pandemic. It’s still too early to make any definitive calls, but the latest numbers show storm clouds gathering over the market,” said Todd Teta, chief product officer with ATTOM Data Solutions. “With this second special report on the potential impact of the pandemic, we see pockets around the country that appear more or less poised to withstand downward pressure on prices and other market conditions. Over the next few months, enough data should come in to tell us how things will most likely pan out.”

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