2018’s Real-Estate Markets

 

Information on the housing markets

Whether you’re joining the real-estate business or just looking for a place to call home, it’s important to get a handle on the housing markets you’re considering before investing in a property. With unemployment falling and house prices rising, the market as a whole has been in a boom. But while home values are rising, up almost $16,000 on average just in the first quarter of 2018, fewer are being built and bought because mortgage rates are rising. However, home prices and rental rates vary widely across the U.S. based on supply and demand.

If you aim for long-term growth, equity and profit, you’ll need to look beyond tangible factors like square footage and style. Those factors certainly drive up property values. From an investor’s standpoint, though, they hold less significance than historical market trends and the economic health of residents.

To determine the best local real-estate markets in the U.S., WalletHub compared 300 cities of varying sizes across 22 key indicators of housing-market attractiveness and economic strength. Our dataset ranges from median home-price appreciation to home sales turnover rate to job growth. Read on for our findings, expert insight from a panel of researchers and a full description of our methodology.

Best Places to Buy a House

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Overall rank (1=Best) City Total Score ‘Real-Estate Market’ Rank ‘Affordability & Economic Environment’ Rank
1 Frisco, TX 75.06 8 1
2 McKinney, TX 74.6 7 2
3 Allen, TX 73.93 11 3
4 Santa Clara, CA 73.79 1 247
5 Durham, NC 72.45 5 60
6 Murfreesboro, TN 72.4 10 7
7 Richardson, TX 72.29 12 10
8 Seattle, WA 72.16 3 171
9 Bellevue, WA 72.14 4 142
10 Denton, TX 71.98 9 23
11 Sunnyvale, CA 70.71 2 276
12 Carrollton, TX 70.17 16 24
13 Denver, CO 70.16 6 132
14 Cary, NC 69.39 41 4
15 Fort Worth, TX 69.34 13 88
16 Roseville, CA 69.2 18 37
17 Thornton, CO 69.11 21 30
18 Fort Collins, CO 68.96 19 38
19 Boise, ID 68.95 23 40
20 Aurora, CO 68.86 15 102
21 Irving, TX 68.45 24 62
22 Arvada, CO 68.17 22 82
23 Colorado Springs, CO 68.12 33 26
24 Renton, WA 67.83 17 149
25 Nashville, TN 67.77 29 66
26 Grand Rapids, MI 67.74 25 95
27 Irvine, CA 67.58 40 27
28 Charlotte, NC 67.49 35 42
29 Overland Park, KS 67.41 32 69
30 Longmont, CO 67.32 20 161

Ask the Experts

Economic indicators point to a strong housing market, but does that mean it’s a good time to buy a home? We consulted a panel of experts for their insight. Click on the panelists’ profiles below to read their bios and thoughts on the following key questions:

  1. Is now a good time to buy a home? What economic indicators should potential buyers be watching?
  2. Are foreign buyers driving up the cost of U.S. real estate? Which cities are most affected?
  3. How likely is it that the Federal Reserve will increase interest rates in the coming months? How will this impact the housing market?
  4. Why are Millennials still sitting out of the housing market? What can be done to increase homeownership rates for this cohort?
  5. In evaluating the healthiest housing markets, what are the top five indicators?
  • WaysAICP – Associate Professor and Program Director, MS in Real Estate Development, Jefferson University
  • J. BetancurProfessor, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • AcolinAssistant Professor, University of Washington’s College of Built Environment
  • G. ChernoffProfessor, New York University
  • M. SpringerProfessor of Finance and Real Estate, Department of Finance, Clemson University; President, Faculty Advisory Council and College of Business Faculty and Secretary, American Real Estate Society