Top 10 Fastest Growing Cities In The US [Updated 2021]

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The fastest growing cities in the US this year are merely lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time. It’s their proximity to primary cities that has allowed today’s booming cities to capitalize on prohibitively expensive housing conditions and remote-work trends. If for nothing else, large cities are falling out of favor. Most buyers are ready and willing to trade their more expensive cities for close and affordable alternatives. As a result, the fastest growing cities in the US are all located next to some of the country’s largest metropolitan areas.

Fastest Growing Cities In America: Main Factors

Each of the fastest growing cities in the US shares several things in common, but one indicator stands out above the rest in 2021: location, location, location. The most critical factor influencing today’s booming cities is their proximity to flourishing primary cities. If for nothing else, the new marketplace created in the wake of the pandemic has made the majority of today’s biggest cities prohibitively expensive, so much so that people are looking to move to more affordable areas. Additionally, the work-from-home trend that has emerged during the pandemic has permitted even more people to pack up and leave in search of the following:

  • Transportation: The pandemic has surpassed the need for public transportation, but forward-thinking buyers are assuming COVID-19 will be in the rearview mirror sooner rather than later. As a result, transportation remains one of the most important factors supporting booming cities.

  • Housing Supply: Real estate inventory is in short supply. However, listings are even harder to come by in major cities. As a result, the single greatest factor determining today’s fastest growing cities is housing supply. Not surprisingly, people are more likely to move somewhere they can buy a home.

  • Amenities: When choosing a city to live in, amenities are on the top of everyone’s mind. After all, people aren’t moving just for a new home; they are moving to emerge themselves in an entire area. Therefore, most of the fastest growing cities in the US offer great amenities. In particular, outdoor recreation seems to be the most desired amenity in 2021.

  • Job Opportunities: Any other year, job opportunities would be the biggest factor. However, today’s up-and-coming cities in the US are all within a short commute of major primary cities. As a result, many buyers are keeping their current jobs and moving to more affordable areas.

  • Housing Prices: While it’s hard to say any real estate market is “cheap” at the moment, one of the most important factors supporting booming cities is relative affordability. While home prices have tested new highs each month in just about every city in the US, the cities on this list are more affordable than their primary counterparts.

What Are The Fastest Growing Cities In The US In 2021?

The impact of COVID-19 on the real estate market has changed what buyers look for in their next home. Today, buyers are looking for more affordable living arrangements away from COVID-19 hot spots. As a result, many secondary cities are starting to grow at a rapid rate. Specifically, these are the fastest growing cities in the US:

  • The Woodlands, TX

  • Temecula-Murrieta, CA

  • Frisco, TX

  • Buckeye, AZ

  • New Braunfels, TX

  • McKinney, TX

  • South Jordan, UT

  • Meridian, ID

  • Cedar Park, TX

  • Fort Myers, FL

Booming cities

1. The Woodlands, TX

  • Sales Price: $402,500 (+7.3% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $168 (+15.9% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 1.0%

  • Down Payment: N/A

  • Homes Sold: 235

  • Days On Market: 12

By the end of the third quarter, median home prices in The Woodlands were up 7.3% year over year and are now somewhere in the neighborhood of $402,500. At this time last year, homes were selling in an average of 26 days; however, the competition onset by the pandemic has more than cut that time in half. Today, the average home sale is taking as little as 12 days. The shorter amount of time on the market is directly correlated to The Woodland’s insufficient inventory levels. As recently as September, the city only saw 235 homes sell—down from 279 at the same time last year.

2. Temecula, CA

  • Sales Price: $675,000 (+27.4% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $304 (+27.2% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 3.0%

  • Down Payment: 25.7%

  • Homes Sold: 218

  • Days On Market: 18

The median home value in the Temecula real estate market is approximately $675,000, or about 27.4% more than the same time last year. The increase directly results from competition and being one of the fastest growing cities in the US. If for nothing else, most homes receive at least seven offers and sell in as little as 18 days. Temecula has so much competition that most buyers are willing to waive protective contingencies to close deals. Most notably, however, Temecula is only about an hour north of the San Diego real estate market. As a result, Temecula has become the beneficiary of many buyers trading the expensive confines of San Diego for more affordable living accommodations.

3. Frisco, TX

  • Sales Price: $539,500 (+27.4% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $196 (+28.9% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 5.0%

  • Down Payment: N/A

  • Homes Sold: 303

  • Days On Market: 19

Heading into the fourth quarter of 2021, the median home value in Frisco was about $539,500. In one year, the city’s median home value increased as much as 27.4% because of several indicators caused by the pandemic. Despite the higher prices, however, homes in Frisco are selling at a record pace. On average, homes sell in 19 days; one year ago they were selling in 36 days. While homes may be selling faster, only 303 homes sold in September 2021, compared to last year when 369 homes sold. It should be noted that the decline in home sales wasn’t due to demand. Located just outside the Dallas real estate market, Frisco saw increased demand as people sought more affordable options.

4. Buckeye, AZ

  • Sales Price: $400,000 (+34.2% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $206 (+34.6% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 2.0%

  • Down Payment: N/A

  • Homes Sold: 281

  • Days On Market: 28

Located within proximity to the Phoenix real estate market, Buckeye has become the beneficiary of a migration towards affordability. If for nothing else, the pandemic enabled many people to work from home without being tied to an office. As a result, many primary cities saw people leave for cheaper alternatives like Buckeye. The influx of interest in Buckeye has not only helped it become one of the fastest growing cities in the US, but local home prices have increased almost exponentially. Buckeye’s median sales price has increased 34.2% in the last year and now sits somewhere around $400,000. In addition to higher prices, homes are selling faster and more listings are starting to hit the market.

5. New Braunfels, TX

  • Sales Price:$365,600 (+23.3% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $183 (+25.3% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 1.0%

  • Down Payment: N/A

  • Homes Sold: 222

  • Days On Market: 15

Situated outside San Antonio, New Braunfels is yet another metropolitan area benefiting from its proximity to a primary city. With more people willing and able to migrate away from San Antonio, New Braunfels’ natural spaces like parks and the Guadalupe River have provided an escape for those looking to “get away.” As more people looked to avoid heavily populated areas, New Braunfels became the logical choice for many new homeowners, and prices reflected as much. As one of the fastest growing cities in the US, the median home value in New Braunfels has increased 23.3% over the last year. Most listings are receiving multiple offers, and the most desired homes are selling for as much as 5.0% over asking prices in about five days.

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6. McKinney, TX

  • Sales Price: $458,500 (+26.3% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $189 (+29.5% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 5.0%

  • Down Payment: N/A

  • Homes Sold: 352

  • Days On Market: 19

Another suburb of the Dallas–Fort Worth metropolitan area to make the list of the fastest growing cities in the US, McKinney is firing on all cylinders. Not unlike the other cities on this list, Mckinney is attracting those who are no longer tied to an office throughout the pandemic. The influx of interest has increased home values by 26.3% in the last 12 months, and there’s nothing to suggest the pace will slow down anytime soon. As one of the hottest markets in one of the county’s most active states, McKinney is expected to grow for quite some time. Those who move in now may benefit from decades of expansion.

7. South Jordan, UT

  • Sales Price: $595,450 (+31.8% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $206 (+35.9% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 2.0%

  • Down Payment: N/A

  • Homes Sold: 112

  • Days On Market: 16

Located on the outskirts of Salt Lake City, South Jordan is no more than 20 miles from one of the country’s hottest markets. However, since residents are looking to move away from primary cities, buyers have turned to South Jordan. Evidence of the growth can be found in several indicators, not the least of which is how long homes are lasting on the market. Many homes get multiple offers, some with waived contingencies. On average, real estate in South Jordan is selling in 16 days, which is 38.5% lower than this time last year. Some of the most desired properties are selling for as much as 5.0% over tasing price and in as little as six days.

8. Meridian, ID

  • Sales Price: $540,000 (+34.6% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $271 (+39.0% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 0.7%

  • Down Payment: 26.7%

  • Homes Sold: 297

  • Days On Market: 11

As perhaps the hottest market in the country, the median home value in Boise has increased 46.1% over the last year. The increase is directly correlated to the pandemic and people seeking out more affordable living situations with low populations and risk of infection. That said, the latest growth in the Boise real estate market has already reached a tipping point. Today, buyers are looking just outside of Boise and like what they see in Meridian. The new interest has made Meridian one of the fastest growing cities in the US, and home values are skyrocketing, to the tune of 34.6% growth in the last year.

9. Cedar Park, TX

  • Sales Price: $477,000 (+23.9% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $239 (+48.4% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 7.0%

  • Down Payment: N/A

  • Homes Sold: 116

  • Days On Market: 34

Another metro on the list of booming cities is Cedar Park in Texas. Instead of piggybacking off the recent success of Dallas, however, Cedar Park has become the beneficiary of its proximity to Austin. In particular, Austin’s growing tech sector has attracted many businesses and plenty of employment. The net migration into Austin has recently spilled over into Cedar Park, drastically increasing real estate activity. As of the fourth quarter of 2021, the most desirable homes are receiving several offers, many with no contingencies at all. The competition has also seen homes sell for upwards of 13.0% over asking in as little as 13 days.

10. Fort Myers, FL

  • Sales Price: $307,000 (+22.8% year over year)

  • Sale $/Sq. Ft.: $191 (+28.2% year over year)

  • Over List Price: 3.0%

  • Down Payment: N/A

  • Homes Sold: 657

  • Days On Market: 8

The last metro to make the “fastest growing cities in America” list is Fort Myers in Florida. Not unlike every other city on this list, migration patterns have favored Fort Myers as more people attempt to find affordable homes. As more buyers flock to Fort Myers, however, home prices continue to increase. In the last year, sales prices have increased by 22.8%. The homes receiving the most attention sell for about 3.0% over asking in as little as three days. The competition is so fierce that most buyers find themselves needing to waive contingencies to close a deal.

summary

The fastest growing cities in the US are all the beneficiaries of the impact of COVID-19 on the real estate market. Most notably, today’s primary cities are too expensive and crowded. As a result, buyers have sought out more affordable living arrangements. The cities listed above benefited from being within proximity to larger cities, but they also boasted the most important factors buyers were looking for. The unique convergence of location and offerings have enabled these booming cities to thrive in 2021 and beyond.


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Sources

https://www.redfin.com/city/26049/TX/The-Woodlands/housing-market
https://www.redfin.com/city/19701/CA/Temecula/housing-market
https://www.redfin.com/city/30844/TX/Frisco/housing-market
https://www.redfin.com/city/2047/AZ/Buckeye/housing-market
https://www.redfin.com/city/13081/TX/New-Braunfels
https://www.redfin.com/city/11666/TX/McKinney/housing-market
https://www.redfin.com/city/18112/UT/South-Jordan/housing-market
https://www.redfin.com/city/13444/ID/Meridian/housing-market
https://www.redfin.com/city/30813/TX/Cedar-Park/housing-market
https://www.redfin.com/city/6208/FL/Fort-Myers/housing-market

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