How the Housing Market Is Fighting Its Way Back

Home prices are bottoming out in a number of cities. But as Boise shows, the return to real estate sanity is neither quick nor painless

Danny Wilcox Frazier / Redux

If you'd like to get a sense of how we're emerging from our nationwide housing malaise, sit down at Jillian and Aaron Roberts' kitchen table. As 2-year-old twins Lennon and Miles run by — those divots in the table are their doing — the couple explain that when they first started looking to become homeowners back in 2006, there was little they could afford. "Even a modest home was too much for us," says Jillian, recalling the go-go years of real estate, when a young family like hers didn't stand a chance of getting into the game.

By last winter, the...

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