Here's where the nation's luckiest home buyers live

Zillow

By Lauren Thompson, Zillow

When it comes to purchasing a home, timing really is everything. Some recent buyers have been extraordinarily lucky, with home values that have roughly doubled in as little as four years. When the real estate bubble burst, they bought at the lowest point in their local markets.

Zillow analyzed cities with populations over 50,000 and found the luckiest home buyers in America — those who bought in the right place at the right time and have now seen the highest appreciation growth on their homes. The analysis tracked home purchases beginning in January 2006.

Here are where the luckiest home buyers in America live, and when they purchased their homes (scroll to the bottom for a shareable infographic):

10. HAYWARD, CALIFORNIA

Month purchased: October 2011
Purchase value: $262,300
Current value: $466,900
Value growth: 78.0 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in Hayward at $465,000.

9. MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIFORNIA

Month purchased: June 2009
Purchase value: $719,300
Current value: $1,289,600
Value growth: 79.3 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in Mountain View at $1,350,000.

8. NORTH LAS VEGAS, NEVADA

Month purchased: January 2012
Purchase value: $92,900
Current value: $169,300
Value growth: 82.2 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in North Las Vegas at $169,900.

7. ANTIOCH, CALIFORNIA

Month purchased: November 2011
Purchase value: $179,600
Current value: $328,100
Value growth: 82.7 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in Antioch at $325,000.

6. VALLEJO, CALIFORNIA

Month purchased: February 2012
Purchase value: $149,100
Current value: $276,900
Value growth: 85.7 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in Vallejo at $285,000.

5. SAN PABLO, CALIFORNIA

Month purchased: December 2011
Purchase value: $170,400
Current value: $317,400
Value growth: 86.3 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in San Pablo at $329,000.

4. LEHIGH ACRES, FLORIDA

Month purchased: January 2011
Purchase value: $58,600
Current value: $110,200
Value growth: 88.1 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in Lehigh Acres at $111,900.

3. PITTSBURG, CALIFORNIA

Month purchased: October 2011
Purchase value: $160,400
Current value: $315,200
Value growth: 96.5 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in Pittsburg at $319,950.

2. RICHMOND, CALIFORNIA

Month purchased: October 2011
Purchase value: $159,300
Current value: $324,500
Value growth: 103.7 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in Richmond at $330,000.

1. PALO ALTO, CALIFORNIA

Month purchased: September 2006
Purchase value: $1,170,300
Current value: $2,407,100
Value growth: 105.7 percent

Pictured: A home for sale now in Palo Alto at $2,450,000.