Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

4 of 7
BACKNEXT
Rochester, NY
Median home price: $119,000
Value lost since 2006: 5.2%
Forecast gain by 2011*: 2.2%

Like Pittsburgh, Rochester has had to reinvent itself. Old economy companies like Eastman Kodak and Xerox have lost much of their importance and reduced their workforces.

The slack has been picked up by such newer companies as Paychex, a successful payroll-service company headquartered there, as well as high-tech optical companies. The current unemployment rate of 8.1% is was well below the national average of 9.6%.

Rochester is also a learning center with the University of Rochester, which hosts both the foremost optics research center in the nation and the Eastman School of Music, a premiere music institution. A few years ago, the university surpassed Kodak as the city's largest employer, with more than 17,000 workers. Another notable outpost of academia is the Rochester Institute of Technology and there are several smaller colleges.

Rochester home prices never bubbled during the boom, but they have enjoyed slow, steady growth during the bust, gaining 5.2% over the past three years*. Since many of the area's jobs pay reasonably well (the median household income is $63,000, which is above the national median), the relatively affordable housing market has been open to most of the population.

The prices also meant few homebuyers resorted to toxic mortgages, and New York's strong consumer protection laws tended to discourage predatory lending. As a consequence, Rochester has been less burdened by foreclosures than most big markets. Only one property for every 276 had a foreclosure filing against it during the first six months of 2009, about a third the national rate.

NEXT: Memphis, Tenn.

Last updated October 21 2009: 4:51 AM ET
Email | Print | Share  |  RSS
 
google my aol my msn my yahoo! netvibes
Paste this link into your favorite RSS desktop reader
See all CNNMoney.com RSS FEEDS (close)
Source: Fiserv
Through June 30, 2009
More Galleries
The stock market's wild week in 6 pictures It was the wildest week in stocks in recent memory. Here's photos and CNNMoney's tweets of reactions to the panicked selling on Monday and Tuesday, which gave way to a mad buying scramble on Wednesday and Thursday. And then...a selloff on Friday again. More
How New Orleans is learning to live with water After Hurricane Katrina, the city of New Orleans had to reinvent the way it manages water and protects itself from future storms. More
Your degree will earn you the most from these colleges Art majors can make big bucks, too. Find out which school has the highest paid grads in your major. More

Special Offer