Flight from big cities INCREASES despite end of pandemic with record numbers of homebuyers relocating from coastal cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York and Seattle to more affordable areas to beat inflation and work from home
- A report shows 32.3 percent of Redfin users were looking to move to a different metropolitan area in the first quarter of 2022
- Those numbers are up from 31.5 percent a year ago and 26 percent in 2019
- The company blames factors like skyrocketing home prices, rising mortgage rates and inflation as families look to find a more affordable place to live
- The top cities people are looking to leave, according to their data, are San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington DC and Seattle
- Redfin said that the ‘outflow’ is showing ‘early signs of a housing-market slowdown in those areas’
Redfin, a real-estate brokerage, released a report showing that 32.3 percent of users were looking to move to a different metropolitan area in the first quarter of 2022, up from 31.5 percent a year ago and 26 percent in 2019.
The company blames factors like skyrocketing home prices, rising mortgage rates and inflation – which hit a 41-year-high 8.5 percent in March – as families look to find a more affordable place to live. They also note that the ability to work remotely has given people more freedom to move.
The analysis is based on a sample of about two million Redfin users who searched for homes across more than 100 metro areas in the first quarter, singling out what they deemed were serious buyers.
The top cities people are looking to leave, according to their data, are San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington DC and Seattle.
San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington DC and Seattle topped the list of cities people are looking to move to, with Miami, Phoenix, Tampa Bay, Sacramento and Las Vegas topping the destinations
While many are looking to relocate, people in Seattle were seen as most frequently searching for a move to Phoenix, while those in Los Angeles wanted to relocate to nearby San Diego and New Yorkers were headed south for Miami and Tampa
Inflation sky-rocketed to a 41-year-high of 8.5 percent in March of 2022
Notably, three of the top six cities on the list of high inflows are in the state of Florida.
Redfin suggests that ‘sunny, relatively affordable’ areas are often the most popular places to move, but that the searches for Florida’s biggest cities have skyrocketed. Miami’s at six times the number of searches for people to move than it was two years ago, while Tampa’s numbers have tripled since before the pandemic.
Florida is an especially popular destination for people looking to leave both New York and Chicago.
As recently as March, Governor Ron DeSantis was touting the number of New Yorkers who were fed up and moved to the Sunshine State, according to the New York Post.
Redfin said that the ‘outflow’ is showing ‘ early signs of a housing-market slowdown in those’ coastal cities. In general, the brokerage said they’re seeing fewer buyers contacting their agents in 2022 than in years past, in addition to a decline in mortgage applications.
They cited Seattle as particularly troublesome, where home prices rose 15 percent year-over-year to around $750,000 for a typical home. The tech jobs Seattle is famous for have gone more towards work from home than most, which has allowed them to seek more affordable areas.
The news comes after it was revealed New York, Los Angeles , San Francisco, Chicago and other large cities lost the most residents during the pandemic city exodus last year
‘I’ve worked with many home sellers recently who are moving to a completely new area,’ said Seattle Redfin agent Nicole McCormick. ‘A lot of them are remote workers or people who feel confident they’ll be able to get a new job–leaving for sunnier places where they can get more home for their money, like Phoenix or Sacramento.’
Phoenix and Sacramento are in the top five of cities with the highest ‘inflow’ or home buyers looking to move there. They’re joined by Miami, Tampa Bay, Las Vegas and Cape Coral.
The most popular destination for people from Seattle has been Phoenix, according to Redfin. Home prices in Phoenix, while also rising, are significantly lower at at an average of $456,000.
The news comes after it was revealed New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago and other large cities lost the most residents during the pandemic city exodus last year as about 75 per cent of U.S. counties experienced a loss in population, according to a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau.
The agency revealed on Thursday that American’s fled metropolitan areas between April 2020 to July 2021 in favor of the South West, with Dallas, Houston, Austin and Phoenix among those to see the largest growth last year.
The Census Bureau said: ‘In 2021, fewer births, an aging population and increased mortality – intensified by the COVID-19 pandemic – contributed to a rise in natural [population] decrease’ across the country,’ but particular hitting big cities the hardest.’
That saw 75 per cent of all US counties record falling populations in 2021. The figure the year before was 55.5 per cent, and in 2019 it sat at 45.5 per cent. Much of the sharp increase has been blamed on COVID tearing through older populations most vulnerable to the illness, with more than 975,000 Americans confirmed to have died of it.
Last year’s trend generally saw residents of more liberal ‘blue’ cities and states move to conservative ‘red’ states, and could lead to traditionally Republican areas turning Democrat thanks to the influx of newcomers.
Those blue cities have also been in the headlines for the wrong reasons in recent years, thanks to soaring levels of violent crime blamed on progressive district attorneys and slashing of police budgets.