Economists, investment strategists, and real estate experts predict 2021 to be the year of the Sun Belt cities. Phoenix, Nashville, Tampa, Denver, and Austin all experienced a hot market last year, but these metros' upward trajectory is not predicted to end this year. Zillow surveyed a panel of industry experts for their fourth quarter Zillow Home Price Expectations Survey, which all say these top-performing cities are most likely to outperform the nation when it comes to home value growth. Austin, TX will lead as the hottest housing market, Zillow says. This makes 2021 the second year in a row where experts expect Austin at the top.
Austin was also predicted to be the hottest market in last year’s survey, and that proved true. By mid-December, the median list price for homes in the Austin metropolitan area was up 23.6% year-over-year — the largest rise among the 50 largest U.S. markets.
A large majority (84%) of those surveyed said home value value growth in Austin would out-perform the national average, compared to just 9% who said they believed it would fare worse. Phoenix came in second with 69%, followed by Nashville (67%), Tampa (60%), and Denver (56%).
The top-five metros are all relatively affordable options compared to expensive coastal areas that have led home appreciation ranks in recent years, providing relative value for those looking to take advantage of low mortgage rates to buy their first home or move up in the market. The top five are also, for the most part, sunny locales; all except Nashville rank in the top-half of U.S. cities for their annual percentage of possible sunshine, according to NOAA data reported by NerdWallet.