Most Popular Housing Markets

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As the housing market rides out the foreclosure flood, home prices continue to slide and interest rates hover at record lows. Those two factors have ratcheted up home affordability to a nearly unprecedented level. In fact, the National Association of Home Builders announced Thursday that affordability just hit a 20-year high.

Recognizing what very well may be once-in-a-lifetime deals, house hunters surely are making good use of listing search engines to home in on great buys. By using Realtor.com's most-searched markets list, we thought we'd bring you the places that they are gravitating towards most. Click through our gallery to see mouthwatering homes in the 10 cities that are hogging all the attention.

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Most Popular Housing Markets
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Most Popular Housing Markets

Median List Price: $186,000
Total Listings: 53,009
Median Age of Inventory: 138 days

Home Price: $4.995 million
Beds/Baths: 6/6
Sq. Ft.: 12,000

Users of Realtor.com searched for homes in Chicago more than any other city in January. With a little over 53,000 homes for sale, the city has ample supply for house hunters. 

Behind this luxury home's brick and limestone exterior, is a whopping 12,000 feet of space. The listing description claims the house offers just the right balance of public and private spaces. 

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Arched doorways and exposed beams infuse the wide halls with an old-world feel. Other details include maple floors, leaded windows and period lighting.  

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The first floor features an expansive recreation room and private gym. Upstairs is the home's "master bath," which comes with a vanity, makeup desk, whirlpool tub and vintage shower.

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Median List Price: $81,700
Total Listings: 22,370
Median Age of Inventory: 70 days

Home Price: $290,000
Beds/Baths: 3/3
Sq. Ft.: 2,800

Speaking volumes to the affordability of Detroit housing, not one of Realtor.com's Detroit listings is priced above $1 million. 

This $290,000 home is high-end as far as the city's market goes. The apartment, which features waterfront views, dates back to Detroit's heyday when the American automobile industry was firing on all cylinders. 

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The expansive living room offers a glimmer of its roots, with its hardwood floors and fireplace. Price per square foot of the dwelling is just $104. 

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Pictured here is the home's elegant dining room. There are virtually no other city markets that'll deliver an apartment interior like this one for such a low price. 

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Median List Price: $320,444
Total Listings: 26,858
Median Age of Inventory: 83 days

Home Price: $10.95 million
Beds/Baths: 6/9
Sq. Ft.: 13,699

Los Angeles' median home price may tower over the national median (which is below $200,000); but in coming in at No. 3 on our list, that apparently hasn't stopped prospective buyers from scouring the city's listings. 

This spanking-new, palatial mansion features floor-to-ceiling windows that display the home's jaw-dropping panoramas for all they're worth. 

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The home's inviting infinity pool perches over the urban sprawl.  

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In addition to otherworldly views, the $10.995 million home features a stark, contemporary interior.

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Median List Price: $221,995
Total Listings: 21,693
Median Age of Inventory: 124 days

Home Price: $4,898,100
Beds/Baths: 4/2
Sq. Ft.: N/A

Philadelphia's median home price hovers above the national median by a considerable margin. The city has one of the highest average inventory ages on our list. That may induce more sellers to cut their prices. 

This apartment building offers some stunning flats that cost nearly $5 million a piece. 

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The expansive interior has a sleek layout along with details that add a dash of swank. 

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Philly's skyline waits outside floor-to-ceiling windows. The upscale apartment has access to an in-house gym and pool.

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Median List Price: $169,500
Total Listings: 17,699
Median Age of Inventory: 69 days

Home Price: $2.75 million
Beds/Baths: 6/8
Sq. Ft.: 6,917

Phoenix-Mesa, bringing cheaper than average homes to the home-buying table, is fifth on our list. Perhaps luring flocks of bargain hunters, the area's homes are selling significantly faster than in most cities. 

This contemporary has a well-landscaped courtyard and guesthouse. The listing description plays up the home's privacy, which makes the home "feel miles away." 

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The home's crowning feature is probably the pool pictured here, which sits between the guesthouse and main house. 

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The stucco home also offers an artist's studio and three-stall barn, along with a pastoral field for horse-riding. 

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Median List Price: $150,000
Total Listings: 48,705
Median Age of Inventory: 91 days

Home Price: $6.75 million
Beds/Baths: 8/12
Sq. Ft.: N/A

Atlanta has also drawn the interest of many prospective buyers, and its affordable median home price -- $150,000 -- may explain why. 

This rustic waterfront mansion represents the pinnacle of luxury in Atlanta real estate. 

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The finely-finished home offers a giant kitchen whose kitchen island, with its eight stools, is so expansive that it seems more of a bar, than actual cooking space. 

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Pictured here is the home's lavish great room. Its arched windows bathe the space in light. With eight bedrooms, the home seems tailor-made for clan getaways. 

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Median List Price: $142,000
Total Listings: 18,827
Median Age of Inventory: 110 days

Home Price: $3,999,999
Beds/Baths: 6/8
Sq. Ft.: 6,763

Florida is one of the states hit hardest by the the housing bust with rampant foreclosures driving down home prices all around the state. So it's no surprise that buyers have the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater area in their crosshairs. 

This magnificent waterfront manse sits on some prime Tampa real estate. Price per square foot? $591. While that may strike you as exorbitant, keep in mind, pre-meltdown, this place's value surely dwarfed its current price tag. 

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The home is decked out in luxurious upholstery. There are six bedrooms and six bathrooms. 

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The house offers no shortage of windows, keeping the home's lush, tropical setting within reach. 

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Median List Price: $189,900
Total Listings: 16,291
Median Age of Inventory: 94 days

Home Price: $6.495 million
Beds/Baths: 3/5
Sq. Ft.: 5,025

Dallas' median home price hovers around the national median, rendering it a fairly affordable city to your average American. 

This home, however, is not affordable to your average American -- but, hey, it's fun to look at. The contemporary sits on a one-acre lot that stares out at the Dallas skyline. Recently, the home's price was slashed to $6.49 million. 

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The home features an expansive living area with soaring ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows perfect for sucking in the stunning city sprawl. 

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There's also a fully equipped kitchen that offers your fair share of marble countertops. The home is handicap-outfitted.

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Median List Price: $155,000
Total Listings: 10,857
Median Age of Inventory: 81 days

Home Price: $3.99 million
Beds/Baths: 5/8
Sq. Ft.: 8,676

Another city still reeling from the housing bust, Orlando is attracting many bargain hunters eager to capitalize on low home prices. 

This mansion, constructed in 2009, recently had it's price cut to $3.99 million. It sprawls 8,676 feet, and has an exterior built largely of stone. 

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The interior feels almost regal with its cherry-stained wood paneling, columns and crown molding. The chandeliers don't hurt either. 

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Other highlights beyond its exquisite decor include the home's game room, hot tub and golf course views. 

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Median List Price: $121,000
Total Listings: 21,665
Median Age of Inventory: 105 days

Home Price: $8 million
Beds/Baths: 6/8
Sq. Ft.: 13,489

Las Vegas took one of the biggest shellackings from the bursting of the real estate bubble, with its median home price plunging by more than 60 percent. It would seem that buyers are keen on taking advantage of the rock-bottom prices. 

This massive luxury home almost certainly used to be worth well over $10 million. Now the 13,489-square-foot behemoth is running for $8 million. 

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Interior details include arched doorways, columns and coffered ceilings. 

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Also see:
Home Affordability at Record High, Builders' Report Says
Bank Sold Your Loan? Mortgage Settlement May Deal You Out

Foreclosed Homeowners Get More Time to Request a Review


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