A roundup of news and information from around the web about real estate, personal finance, and the economy.
Zillow and Yelp Name Top Affordable U.S. Suburbs With a City Feel
More and more Americans are working remotely and rethinking how and where they want to live. Urban amenities—like restaurants, nightlife, museums, and sports venues—have long drawn Americans to live in large cities. While demand remains strong there, many buyers are seeking a new balance of indoor and outdoor space and affordability while still maintaining that big-city feel.
A new Cityness Index by Zillow and Yelp Inc. pinpoints the U.S. suburbs that best strike that balance.
There is a “Great Reshuffling” on the horizon. Yelp data shows that the number of quotes requested for movers recently increased 34% in San Francisco, 22% in New York, and 6% in Los Angeles. This desire to move is also reflected in a recent Zillow poll of people newly working from home because of the pandemic, with two-thirds saying they would consider moving if they had the flexibility to work from home occasionally.
“At Yelp, we’re seeing consumer interest and requests for quotes in categories like movers, packing services, and mortgage lenders increase in major metro areas, compared to the same time period last year,” says Tara Lewis, Yelp trend expert. “For city dwellers who don’t want to sacrifice great amenities like restaurants, art galleries, and nightlife, but are dreaming of a little more space and a more affordable lifestyle, these suburbs offer a similar variety of great local businesses.”
Zillow and Yelp’s top 10 affordable suburbs with a city feel:
- Waterbury, Connecticut
- Lowell, Massachusetts
- Joliet, Illinois
- Sunrise, Florida
- Pasadena, Texas
- Lancaster, California
- Hampton, Virginia
- Marietta, Georgia
- Norman, Oklahoma
- Tempe, Arizona
Northeastern Housing Markets Remain Most At Risk Of Economic Impact From Coronavirus Pandemic
ATTOM Data Solutions released its third-quarter 2020 Special Report spotlighting county-level housing markets around the United States that are more or less vulnerable to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The report shows that pockets of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions were most at risk in the third quarter—with clusters in the New York City, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C. areas—while the West and now Midwest are less vulnerable.
The report reveals that Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Delaware had 32 of the 50 counties most vulnerable to the economic impact of the pandemic in the third quarter. They included five suburban counties in the New York City metropolitan area, four around Washington, D.C., four around Philadelphia, PA, four around Baltimore, MD, and seven of Connecticut’s eight counties.
The only four western counties among the top 50 were in northern California and Hawaii, while Illinois had the only six in the Midwest. Another eight were loosely scattered across five southern states—Florida, Louisiana, North Carolina, Texas, and Virginia.
22% of Homebuyers and Sellers Say the Presidential Election Is Impacting Their Plans
Twenty-two percent of homebuyers and sellers said the upcoming presidential election is impacting their plans to buy or sell a home, according to an August survey from Redfin, the technology-powered real estate brokerage. That’s down from 32% in November 2019, per a similar Redfin survey. The drop from last year is likely due to the pandemic, which seems to be outweighing the election as a factor for homebuyers and sellers.
Thirteen percent of respondents said the election is making them more hesitant to buy or sell a home, down from 20% in November 2019. Nine percent of respondents said the election is making them less hesitant to buy or sell a home, down from 12% in November. Election concerns are unlikely to have a major impact on the housing market, partly because a portion of those people will move forward with their plans to buy and/or sell once the election has passed. The survey included more than 1,400 U.S. residents who plan to buy or sell a home in the next 12 months.
Indeed, three-quarters of buyers and half of sellers say the coronavirus pandemic is impacting their plans this year. Forty-three percent of buyers said they’re planning to buy a home later than originally planned because of the pandemic, and 34% said they’re buying a home sooner than originally planned. Of sellers, 21% said the pandemic is delaying their selling plans, 19% said it’s accelerating their selling plans, and 10% said they’ve decided not to sell their home.