Realtor.com® Names 2017's Hottest ZIP Codes in America
Watauga, Texas, takes hottest ZIP title for second year in a row, followed by Livonia, Mich. and Kentwood, Mich.
SANTA CLARA, Calif., Oct. 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Realtor.com®, a leading online real estate destination operated by News Corp [NASDAQ: NWS, NWSA]; [ASX: NWS, NWSLV] subsidiary Move Inc., today announced its third annual list of the Hottest ZIP Codes in America, which illustrates the power of millennial gravitation toward affordable suburbs with local "it" factors.
For the second year in a row, Watauga (76148) leads the list, followed by Livonia (48154); Kentwood (49548); Medford, Mass., (02155); Littleton, Colo. (80123); Castro Valley, Calif., (94546); Colorado Springs, Colo., (80922); Overland Park, Kan., (66210); Mira Mesa, Calif. (92126), and Hilliard, Ohio (43026).
Realtor.com® analyzed 32,000 ZIP codes based on the time it takes properties to sell and how frequently homes are viewed in each ZIP code. Homes in this year's top 10 hottest markets sell in an average of 21 days – 50 days faster than in the rest of the country. Realtor.com® users view home listings in these markets four times more often than those in the rest of the country. One ZIP code was included per metro area.
"While low inventory is a challenge, millennials are the largest generation in U.S. history and they are flexing their muscle when it comes to the housing market," said Danielle Hale, chief economist for realtor.com®. "Increasingly, the hottest housing markets are the ones that appeal to millennial preferences, and right now the standouts are relatively affordable suburbs with local 'it' factors such as hiking trails, great restaurants, and nightlife. With the largest cohort of millennials turning 30 in 2020, we can expect these types of areas to stay in demand in the years to come."
Key factors heating things up in the top 10 hottest markets:
- Relative affordability. The median price for a home in these markets is $360,000 – 1.4 times more than the national median – with prices in five of the top 10 ZIPs exceeding the national average. However, when compared to their immediate surrounding metro area, the median home listing price is lower in six of the top 10 ZIPs and when compared to the county, eight are lower.
- Large shares of older millennials. Millennials aged 25 to 34 make up 17 percent of households in the top 10 ZIPs, compared to 15 percent nationally. Older millennial households comprise a greater share of households than their national share in eight out of the top 10 ZIPs. They also make up the largest share of mortgage originations, with 25-to-34-year-olds accounting for 36 percent of mortgages and 35-to-44-year-olds making up 30 percent.
- High millennial ownership rates. Eight of the top 10 ZIPs have a higher home ownership rate among 25-to-34-year-olds than in their surrounding county as a whole. The average 25-to-34-year-old home ownership rate in top 10 ZIPs is 50 percent, compared to 39 percent in their respective counties and 41 percent nationally.
- Strong job markets. The top 10 ZIP codes are located in counties with an average unemployment rate of 3.6 percent, well below the overall national unemployment rate of 4.4 percent.
- High salaries. In nine out of the top 10 ZIPS, the median household income is higher than the national median. The average household income among the top 10 is $75,829, 1.3 times the $57,462 national median. This is true for millennial segment as well; the average household income for 25-to-34-year-olds in the top 10 is $74,635, 1.3 times the $55,871 national median.
Market Highlights – Top 10 ZIP Codes
76148 – Watauga, Texas – Named the hottest ZIP code for the second consecutive year, due to its highly competitive housing market and desirable amenities. Watauga is an inner suburb of Fort Worth that has a young population, a strong economy and schools that have been rated among the best in the state. Residents also benefit from being part of a vibrant, multicultural metropolis, with great restaurants and cultural offerings like the Kimbell Art Museum and Fort Worth Zoo.
Key housing stats: Average home listing views in ZIP 76148 are up 28 percent over last year, with homes receiving five times more views than those in the rest of the country. Homes in Watauga sell in 18 days, 5 percent slower than last year, with a median list price of $160,441, up 12.4 percent over last year. Tarrant County is expected to add 28,000 jobs this year, an increase of 3 percent.
48154 – Livonia, Mich. – A western suburb of Metro Detroit, Livonia combines the best parts of suburban living with close proximity to the great attractions of the resurgent Motor City. It's just a half hour from downtown destinations such as the Detroit Institute of Art, the historic Eastern Market commercial district and the homes of four professional sports teams. Livonia also is equally close to many of the major employment centers scattered throughout the broader metro area, such as the headquarters of Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Mich. and Beaumont Health in Royal Oak, Mich. It has also been ranked among the safest cities in Michigan and boasts more than 60 parks spread over 1,389 acres.
Housing stats: More than 86 percent of millennials living in the ZIP own their own homes, compared to only 44 percent in the surrounding county. Homes in Livonia sell in 21 days, 25 percent more quickly than last year, with a median list price of $223,780, up 12.3 percent over last year. Wayne County is expected to add 7,000 jobs this year, an increase of 1 percent.
49548 Kentwood, Mich. – Kentwood is part of the Grand Rapids area, one of the fastest-growing parts of the country. In recent years, Grand Rapids has become known for its booming economy, huge annual public art competition and a great local microbrewery and dining scene. Kentwood also is conveniently close to the Gerald R. Ford airport, which has been adding direct flights to major destinations throughout the country.
Housing stats: The dominant buyer segment in Kentwood is millennials, who hold 42 percent of new mortgages in the ZIP and have a 62 percent home ownership rate. Homes in Kentwood sell in 16 days, 49 percent more quickly than last year, with a median list price of $118,833, up 22.4 percent over last year. Kent County is expected to add 5,000 jobs this year, an increase of 2 percent.
02155 Medford, Mass.– Once overlooked as a sleepy city northwest of downtown Boston, Medford is now known for its lively dining options, ample recreation opportunities at Wright's Park and along the Mystic River, and the annual Mystic River Celebration devoted to the arts. The area is home to the renowned Tufts University, and the T provides easy public transportation access to downtown Boston. Residents also enjoy a low tax rate compared to other cities in the region.
Housing stats: The dominant buyer segment in Medford is millennials, who make up 38 percent of new mortgage holders. Homes in Medford sell in 19 days, roughly 41 percent more quickly than last year, with a median list price of $541,158, up 12.9 percent over last year. Middlesex County is expected to add 18,000 jobs this year, an increase of 2 percent.
80123 Littleton, Colo. – Situated on the southwest edge of Denver, ZIP 80123 spans communities including Littleton, Marston and Columbine Valley. This suburban hotspot boasts great shopping options, a fun and historic downtown area and plenty of great condo and single-family home options. That's not to mention its natural beauty and perfect placement for outdoor enthusiasts: Littleton alone features more than 59 parks and an active trail system. Plus, only a 30 minute drive to the base of the Rockies, it's one of the Denver suburbs with the best mountain access.
Housing stats: The dominant buyer segment in ZIP 80123 is millennials, who hold 34 percent of new mortgages in the area and have a median household income of $72,126. Homes in Littleton sell in 22 days, 19 percent more quickly than last year, with a median list price of $533,873, down 3.8 percent compared to last year. Jefferson County is expected to add 5,000 jobs this year, an increase of 2 percent.
94546 Castro Valley, Calif. – Castro Valley is a Bay Area community perfectly located for those who want to live close to the thriving tech scene in San Francisco and Silicon Valley at more affordable prices. Because of its central location – it takes about the same time to get to San Francisco, Silicon Valley and Berkeley – it's especially good for couples who work in different parts of the region.
Housing stats: Millennials make up 35 percent of the new mortgage share in ZIP 94546. Homes in Castro Valley sell in 23 days, about 8 percent more quickly than last year, with a median list price of $728,267, up 6.9 percent over last year. Alameda County is expected to add 4,000 jobs this year, an increase of 1 percent.
80922 Colorado Springs, Colo. – Located less than 25 minutes from Downtown Colorado Springs, the Colorado Springs Airport, and the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, ZIP 80922 is about as convenient as it gets. That's especially true for the thousands who work at the nearby Peterson Air Force Base, but the area is also perfect for those simply seeking an active lifestyle: El Paso County has been called one of the healthiest counties in America. Recreational activity options abound, with miles of nearby trails for hiking, biking, and horse riding.
Housing stats: The number of households in the ZIP grew by 19.5 percent from 2010 – 2017, and it has a home ownership rate of 80 percent among all age groups and 68 percent among millennials. Reflecting the high concentration of military service members in the area, 43 percent of new mortgages in 80922 are guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Homes in Colorado Springs sell in 21 days, about 5 percent more quickly than last year, with a median list price of $273,322, up 4.6 percent over last year. El Paso County is expected to add 9,000 jobs this year, an increase of 3 percent.
66210 Overland Park, Kan. – Overland Park gets high marks for all the major factors: Top-rated schools, affordable homes, and easy access to shopping and attractions like Kansas City, Mo.'s highly rated Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Near the juncture of I-435 and I-69, ZIP 66210 also includes Sprint's headquarters and the Kansas City metro area's largest office park, the 50-acre Corporate Woods.
Housing stats: Millennials already comprise 20 percent of the area's households and are the dominant buying group in the area, holding 39 percent of new mortgages. Homes in Overland Park sell in 24 days, about 22 percent more quickly than last year, with a median list price of $236,454, up 0.5 percent over last year. Johnson County is expected to add 3,000 jobs this year, an increase of 1 percent.
92126 Mira Mesa – ZIP 92126 encompasses the San Diego community of Mira Mesa, which was formerly populated mainly by military families of the nearby Marine Corps Air Station, Miramar – where many Top Gun flight scenes were filmed. Recently, Mira Mesa has become a booming area with a diverse populace and wide variety of independent stores, restaurants and microbreweries. Located 15 minutes from the beach and bordered by a 5,800-acre nature preserve called Mission Trails, Mira Mesa is also a prime location for Southern California-style recreation enthusiasts.
Housing stats: From 2010 – 2017, the number of households in ZIP 92126 grew by 7.4 percent, compared to 5.7 percent in the U.S. as a whole. Homes typically sell within 22 days, about 30 percent more quickly than last year, with a median list price of $536,394, up 2.4 percent over last year. San Diego County is expected to add 5,000 jobs this year, an increase of 0.4 percent.
43026 Hilliard, Ohio – A blend of small-town historical charm, museums and local eateries, Hilliard offers great price-per-square-foot home value and excellent schools. It also provides residents a mix of small-town historical charm, museums and local eateries. On top of that, it's a quick trip to Columbus, which is home to Ohio State University, multiple Fortune 500 Companies and the newly opened Scioto Mile, a sprawling park in the heart of the city.
Housing stats: The dominant buyer segment in ZIP 43026 is millennials, who hold 41 percent of new mortgages and have a 59 percent home ownership rate. Homes in Hilliard sell in 25 days, about 37 percent more quickly than last year, with a median list price of $259,011, up 24.8 percent over last year. Franklin County is expected to add 16,000 jobs this year, an increase of 3 percent.
Top 50 Hottest Markets in America
Grand Rapids, MI
Castro Valley, Calif.
Colorado Springs, Colo.
Overland Park, Kan.
San Diego, Calif.
Elk Grove, Calif.
Fort Wayne, Ind.
San Antonio, Texas
Saint Louis, Mo.
South Portland, Maine
Salt Lake City, Utah
Chapel Hill, Tenn.
For more information about the list, please visit: research.realtor.com.
Realtor.com® is the trusted resource for home buyers, sellers and dreamers, offering the most comprehensive source of for-sale properties, among competing national sites, and the information, tools and professional expertise to help people move confidently through every step of their home journey. It pioneered the world of digital real estate 20 years ago, and today helps make all things home simple, efficient and enjoyable. Realtor.com® is operated by News Corp [NASDAQ: NWS, NWSA] [ASX: NWS, NWSLV] subsidiary Move, Inc. under a perpetual license from the National Association of REALTORS®. For more information, visit realtor.com®.
Lexie Puckett Holbert – email@example.com
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