Your question doesn't have a simple answer.
The level of interest goes beyond which sells better. Buyers have all different reasons for selecting either a ranch or a 2-story, ie. has bad knees - need a ranch or has a growing family - needs a 4 bedrm 2-story.
If you're trying to determine which style of home is better for resale in the future, with proper pricing and being in above average condition, you should be ok with either style.
If you're looking at a new(er) subdivision, where pricing is pretty comparable, keep an eye out for what home sale prices are doing.
Curt, you asked a very detailed question. If you'd like to discuss this more by email or phone, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or (513) 615-1890.
As the population gets older on average, there are more folks looking to downsize. With the slower economy, I have noticed several younger families wanting to downsize and looking for single floor living.
Overall there are more buyers looking for a 2 story home simply because they usually offer more square footage for the price.
I was curious about the number of days on the market for ranches vs 2 story homes so I ran a couple of searches for for homes sold in the past 6 months in Clermont County with at least 3 bedrooms and 1.5 baths. Here are the results
For ranches: 239 homes sold, Average Sale Price was $153,843, and the Average Days on the market was 74
For 2 stories: 401 homes sold, Average Sale Price was $234,527, and the average days on the market was 76.
By the way when are you going to partner up with an agent?
In my opinion, I believe you should consider the neighborhood. If the neighborhood is primarily 2 story homes, then the 2 story home is more likely to attract your greatest number of buyers at resale. If primarily the homes are ranch, then a ranch is more likely to attract your greatest numbers of buyers at resale.
In general though, a 2 story home is easier to sell than a ranch because it's the typical sell in our area. If I were making a purchase and resale were my concern, I'd lean toward a 2 story with basement, but if my plan is to make this my home for long time, I'd buy what I want and for me that means I leand toward a ranch with basement.
Good luck with your search for a home and don't hesitate to call or e-mail if you need help,
If you'd like to discuss this more, please contact me at 513-703-6523 or Jim@JimSellsHomes.com
I am on the West Side, but wanted to say that both Dan & Karen had great answers.
Curt, it all comes down to what the comparison sales are in a community. It differs by location. Appraisers typically look at closest radius staying in the .5 mile radius (in same neighborhood) and comparable sales in the past 6 months.
Happy House Hunting or Selling!
Sheri Mapes the Cincy House Expert