Homebuyers Leaving High-Cost Metros for Smaller Cities

July 30, 2019
phoenix arizona
Photo: Unsplash/Drew Hays

Redfin reports that several high-cost U.S. cities are losing population to more affordable metros such as Phoenix, Atlanta, and Las Vegas.

Twenty-five percent of Redfin.com home searchers looked to move to another metro area in the second quarter of 2019, compared to 24 percent during the same period last year. The national share of home-searchers looking to relocate has been at this level—the highest on record—since the fourth quarter of 2018.

Phoenix retained the number one spot on the list of metro areas with the highest net inflow of Redfin users in the second quarter. A net inflow means more people are looking to move in than leave, while a net outflow means there are more people looking to leave than people looking to move in.

The share of homebuyers searching in the Phoenix metro area from other metro areas was 33.7 percent in the second quarter, a slight decline from both a year earlier (34.0%) and the first quarter (34.5%).

Most of the top migration destinations are relatively affordable metro areas, especially compared to the places from which they are attracting the most new residents. This is the first time that Boston has made it into the top 10 migration destinations. Most of the interest in Boston is coming from New York, which makes sense considering that Boston has similar job opportunities but sales, income, and property taxes that are all considerably lower than New York.

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