RealtyTrac said it combined seven competent indexes to create the recovery index, including the local unemployment rate, the percentage of homes with mortgages under water, the percentage change of foreclosure activity from its peak, the percentage of distressed home sales, institutional investors share of total sales, the cash purchases share of total sales and the median home price percent change from its low point.
RealtyTrac said it used national averages as a baseline for each component index. All the indexes were then averaged to come up with a total recovery index, the firm said.
On the new index, Rochester, was assigned a score of 217, which put it far ahead of the second- and third-place cities, Schenectady-Troy, N.Y., and Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Fla., which each scored 168.
The next two spots were taken by California markets. The San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara area scored 166 on the index, while the San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont area scored 164.
The Top 10 included Birmingham-Hoover, Ala., Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Ga., Fort Collins-Loveland, Colo., Flint, Mich., and Oklahoma City, Okla.
RealtyTrac said it calculated the index for more than 900 housing markets.
But relatively fast-recovering markets were spread out.
Besides New York and California, the states of Colorado, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Wisconsin each had two cities in the Top 20. Alabama, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Arizona and Illinois also had cities in the Top 20, RealtyTrac said.