Best Cities for First Time Home Buyers

02 Jul

If you are a first-time homebuyer you may be looking for the perfect location to call home. Moving to another city or state may help you find not only a great new city to live in  but also help you get a better deal on your brand-new home. 

The Mortgage Research Center took a look at cities that have what most first-time homebuyers are looking for when deciding where to put down roots: affordability, a thriving local economy, and a high quality of life. Here are the top ten spots that they came up with after crunching the numbers:

El Paso, TexasThis city on the western side of the Lone Star state has a population of 678,266 and a median home price of only $121,300 making it a very affordable place to put down roots. There are 70 Fortune 500 companies in the area so employment shouldn’t be a problem. The downtown area offers a number of award-winning restaurants as well as Museum Row so your dining and cultural needs will absolutely be met.  

Austin, TexasThe Lone Star state is a big winner on this list with half of the cities on the list falling within its borders. Austin is a lovely city for young homebuyers and was named the fastest-growing large city in 2019. A median home price of $285,900 means this city is still pretty affordable. Austin is the state capitol and is packed with nightlife, culture, parks and a very lively music scene. 

Raleigh, North CarolinaRaleigh is located in the middle of the Research Triangle, a nine-county region that includes neighboring Durham and Cary. The median home price of $225,000 makes housing affordable and a wide range of tech companies in the area means there are plenty of jobs available. Raleigh has a population of 449,477 and a vibrant downtown bursting with historic buildings and museums makes this city a great place to call home.

Gilbert, ArizonaThis smallish city is packed with breweries, delis, coffeehouses and restaurants. Gilbert has a population of 226,832 and a very low crime rate. The property crime rate is a mere 0.8 percent while violent crimes come in at 1.43 percent. Gilbert is filled with young people, it is the third most popular city among millennials and this generation makes up 10.7 percent of the city’s population. 

Scottsdale, Arizona: Arizona is another big winner with four towns on this list. This city is a bit more expensive than some of the others on our list. A median home price of $405,500 pushes the boundaries of affordable but if you can swing it, this town close to Phoenix is a lovely place to call home. It is packed to the brim with restaurants, museums and plenty of nightlife. 

Virginia Beach, VirginiaIf the beach is more your cup of tea, Virginia Beach may be the perfect spot. You can spend time swimming in the Atlantic or walking along the 28 miles of shoreline. There is also a 3-mile boardwalk for family fun in this city of 450,057 people. Home prices are a bit more expensive here but still affordable with a median price of $267,300. There are plenty of places to work, the city has a large tourism sector as well as a number of military bases in the area. 

Mesa, ArizonaMesa is a sports lover’s paradise. Pro baseball teams come to town for spring training and the areas numerous golf courses makes hitting the links easy. While this city’s warm and dry climate combined with plenty of opportunities for fun are reasons enough to move here, the area’s median home price of $187,900 makes it a home run. 

Plano, TexasPlano used to be mainly farmland but over the last century has transformed itself into a financial and commercial hub with over 281,000 residents. It has a large and eclectic food scene as well as numerous corporate headquarters which helps keep the unemployment rate low. Plano is still affordable with a median home price of $271,300.

Chandler, ArizonaChandler is a suburb of Phoenix which means you can easily head into the city for major sports events or concerts while still enjoying the feeling of a small to medium size town. Chandler has a population of 245,160 residents and has attracted major firms such as Intel to town with its well educated workforce and affordable living. The median home price of $268,000 makes this city a great choice for young homebuyers.

Lexington-Fayette, KentuckyIf horses are your passion, this city is the perfect place to call home. It is surrounded by 400 horse farms and is known as the Horse Capitol of the World. Luckily, this area is still very affordable with the median price of a home coming in at $193,500. Houses aren’t the only affordable thing in the area, Lexington-Fayette has a lower than average cost of living as well making this area a great place for young homebuyers just starting out. 

Irving, TexasIrving falls between Dallas and Fort Worth which gives you easy access to these world class cities while maintaining the small-town feel. Irving has a population of 235,000 and is extremely affordable with a median home price of only $155,200. 

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