Denver and Seattle may be the top teams in football, but as housing markets, they are not exactly in the same league. Their populations are about the same, in the low 600,000s, but their demographics differ enough to make homes in Seattle nearly twice as pricey as those in Denver.
The median home value in Seattle comes in at $430,700, while Denver's hovers around $253,300, according to the Zillow Home Value Index. Denver's pricing, however, is recovering faster than Seattle's, up 9.5 percent from a year ago versus Seattle's 8.4 percent gain.
(Read more: Million-dollar homes: Super Bowl edition)
The differences in the two markets are based on income, as all housing always is. The median income in Seattle is $45,736, while the median income in Denver is $39,500. Denver also has more homes with kids, which brings down housing and household spending power.
"Seattle has more households than Denver, which means that the absolute energy savings impact of 'TV-pooling' is even bigger there," Fischer said.
(Read more: New home buyers are seeing more barriers)
—By CNBC's Diana Olick. Follow her on Twitter
A rebound in home prices has slowed, so has the recovery process for those still submerged with negative equity.
Both U.S. housing starts and building permits suggested underlying market weakness.
Applications for U.S. home mortgages rose last week as interest rates declined, an industry group said on Wednesday.
Realtor.com compiled a list of the best markets for first-time homebuyers. See which metro areas made the top 10.
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