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Housing markets healthiest in rural states

Rural states have some of the nation's healthiest housing markets.

Rural states have some of the nation's healthiest housing markets.

Individuals relocating to rural states will find themselves shopping some of the strongest housing markets in the country, according to a June 29 USA Today article.

The newspaper reported that information gathered by Housing IntelligencePro indicated North Dakota and Iowa are posting nationwide-best numbers in terms of non-distressed home sales. Comparing nationwide non-distressed home sales between March 2010-March 2011 with non-distressed sales from 2006, HousingIntelligence discovered North Dakota is the only state where sales have increased from pre-recession levels, while Iowa was at 70 percent of its 2006 volumes.

The housing markets in South Dakota and Alaska are stable thanks to strong statewide economies, Capital Economics economist Paul Dales told USA Today. He compared Alaska's year-over-year house price increase of 2.7 percent for the first quarter of 2011 to the national 5.5 percent decrease, and South Dakota's May unemployment rate of 4.8 percent to the national 9.1 percent.

Alaska's housing market might be stable, but according to a recent CNBC ranking, it is not likely many people will be relocating there to do business. At number 49, The Last Frontier almost came in dead last on CNBC's 2011 Best Places for Business list. This is the first year Alaska has not ranked 50th.