Healthy housing, low closing costs in Monroe County

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A recent study by financial technology company SmartAsset measured stability, risk, ease of sale and affordability to determine the top housing markets. 

The places that scored the best across these indices were deemed the healthiest housing markets in Illinois.  

Columbia ranked first and Waterloo came in at sixth on this year’s list for all of Illinois. 

The study shows Columbia with an average of 14.4 years living in a home, 6.2 percent of homes with negative equity, 10 percent of homes decreasing in value, 116.1 average days for a home on the market, and 17.6 percent of home costs as percent of income for a Healthiest Markets Index of 83.43.

The study shows Waterloo with an average of 13.4 years living in a home, 6.3 percent of homes with negative equity, 13.5 percent of homes decreasing in value, 86.4 average days for a home on the market, and 19.4 percent of home costs as percent of income for a Healthiest Markets Index of 69.40.

Becoming a homeowner is a financial milestone – but it costs money to close, and that cost varies from county-to-county and state-to-state. 

An analysis from SmartAsset determined the places in Illinois where closing costs made up the lowest percentage of home values. 

The places where the closing cost to home value ratio was lowest were the places that ranked highest in the study. 

Monroe County was among the places in Illinois with the lowest closing costs in this year’s analysis, placing sixth overall. In fact, Monroe was the only metro-east county in the top 10.

The study lists Monroe County as having average closing costs of $4,462, a median home value of $209,100 and closing costs as percent of home value at 2.1 percent for a Closing Costs Index of 72.81.

To calculate closing costs, SmartAsset assumed a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage on each county’s median home value and a 20 percent down payment. 

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