Rent No More! 10 U.S. Cities With Huge Increases in Homeownership

Rent No More! 10 U.S. Cities With Huge Increases in Homeownership
Article by Clare Trapasso; realtor.com | November 27, 2017

House 1026It’s time to tune out the chatter, the doom, and certainly the gloom: The American Dream of homeownership is alive and well. Really.

But that doesn’t mean it’s easy to buy a home these days. So what are the stumbling blocks? Stroke-inducing student loan debt. Soaring home and rent prices, and a lack of properties in many markets. And let’s not forget the Great Recession, which set so many would-be buyers back on their heels.

All this has dragged down homeownership rates, which hit 63.9% nationally in the third quarter of the year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. That’s down about five percentage points from their pre-crash high in 2004.

But wait: There are bright beacons of hope across the nation, places where homeownership is actually on the rise.

The data team at realtor.com® set out to find those metros where homeownership rates are growing the fastest. In the process, we discovered a few trends. Ownership is shooting up the most in Rust Belt cities undergoing a resurgence; in smaller cities close to much bigger and pricier metros, where commuters can snag a home for less; and in fast-growing Southern hubs that are continuing to experience booming job markets.

Bonus: More than half of the metros on our list boast median prices well under the national median of $274,492.

“Affordability is a strong draw to these areas,” says Danielle Hale, chief economist at realtor.com®. A lot of these cities are on the outskirts of big cities where folks can snag an abode for less and then commute downtown for work, she adds.

However, interested buyers had better move fast—all this demand is steadily pushing home prices skyward.

To come up with our findings, the data team analyzed Census data comparing the homeownership rates in the first three-quarters of 2014 to the first three-quarters of 2017. The Census data only included 75 of the largest metros (with some cities moving on or off the list over the years, due to population shifts). Home list price data, from realtor.com, dates from Oct. 1.

So where are the most buyers settling into homes of their very own? Get ready for a few surprises…

1. Milwaukee, WI
Median home price: $224,950
Current homeownership rate: 68.7%
Three-year homeownership change: +11%

2. Charlotte, NC
Median home price: $327,050
Current homeownership rate: 62.8%
Three-year homeownership change: +10.5%

3. Memphis, TN
Median home price: $195,050
Current homeownership rate: 61%
Three-year homeownership change: +9.3%

4. Baltimore, MD
Median home price: $300,040
Current homeownership rate: 68.4%
Three-year homeownership change: +7.3%

5. Allentown, PA
Median home price: $225,050
Current homeownership rate: 74.8%
Three-year homeownership change: +7.3%

6. Pittsburgh
Median home price: $174,950
Current homeownership rate: 74%
Three-year homeownership change: +7.2%

7. Albuquerque, NM
Median home price: $239,950
Current homeownership rate: 66%
Three-year homeownership change: +5.7%

8. Nashville, TN
Median home price: $359,050
Current homeownership rate: 68.8%
Three-year homeownership change: +4.9%

9. Dallas, TX
Median home price: $339,950
Current homeownership rate: 60.7%
Three-year homeownership change: +4.8%

10. Syracuse, NY
Median home price: $149,950
Current homeownership rate: 66.5%
Three-year homeownership change: +4.6%

Read the complete article at realtor.com
Clare Trapasso is the senior news editor of realtor.com and an adjunct journalism professor. She previously wrote for a Financial Times publication and the New York Daily News. Contact her at clare.trapasso@move.com. Follow @claretrap


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Cities Where a 4-Year Degree Pays

Cities where white-collar incomes have jumped the most in the last four years are not necessarily commercial hot spots.

Payscale, a Seattle-based online provider of employee compensation data, identifies urban areas where college graduates saw the most income growth between 2005 and 2009. The cities are scattered throughout the country and prove that even during a recession, it’s not where you live that matters nearly as much as what you do.

“When the crash comes, and you lay off 75 percent, you tend to keep the higher-paid jobs. So your salary base goes up,” says Cynthia Kroll, economist at the Fisher Center of Real Estate and Urban Economics at the University of California Berkeley.

“It’s not that highly skilled people don’t also get laid off, but the mix is going to be weighted toward the more experienced, more skilled workers that you’re going to need when growth comes back,” she says.

Here are the 10 cities where Pay scale says incomes rose the most:

  • El Paso, Texas
  • Bakersfield, Calif.
  • Omaha-Council Bluffs, Neb.
  • Virginia Beach/Norfolk, Va.
  • Des Moines
  • Honolulu
  • Boise City, Idaho
  • Allentown-Bethlehem, Pa.
  • Charlotte
  • Phoenix

Source: Forbes, Francesca Levy (12/15/2009)