By: Jules Schultz | AHWD, ABR, CNE, CRP, GRI

September 17, 2020

As with all things for this year of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 fastest selling housing markets are somewhat surprising. According to a report published at Realtor.com®, many of these markets are not the kind that usually top these lists. Using a data-driven approach, their economics team found ten zip codes in cities and towns throughout the nation that are experiencing extremely high demand and very fast home sales. While demand for more space may be part of the driving force, record low interest rates also help make the case for buying.

What are the 2020 Fastest Selling Housing Markets?

Realtor.com notes the following cities and towns experiencing excessive demand for housing:

  1. Colorado Springs, Colorado
  2. Reynoldsburg, Ohio
  3. Rochester, New York
  4. Melrose, Massachusetts
  5. South Portland, Maine
  6. Topeka, Kansas
  7. Hudson, New Hampshire
  8. Worcester, Massachusetts
  9. Springfield, Virginia
  10. Raleigh, North Carolina

8 of these markets are on the east coast of the US. Some of these markets are near larger cities. Many share some commonalities.

2020 Fastest Selling Housing Markets with Moving Incentives

At least two of the markets with high demand also feature moving incentives. Some of the moving incentives are located at the state level, while others such as Topeka’s “Choose Topeka” incentives are located within the specific market.

Maine

South Portland, Maine, may be benefiting from Maine’s Opportunity Maine Tax Credit. This incentive focuses on drawing younger residents to the state to offset its rapidly aging overall population. The state has noted that by 2026, up to a quarter of its resident will be 65 years of age or older. Thus the need for the incentive that offers recent college graduates working in the state a direct credit of their student loan payments against any state income tax.

Kansas

Topeka, Kansas, may be benefiting from its “Choose Topeka” moving incentive. Developed by a partnership between GO Topeka and local Topeka businesses, the program offers eligible participants and their employers a variety of incentives to move to Topeka:

Participant Benefits

Up to $15,000 in funds in Year 1

  • Renting: $10,000
  • Home Purchase: $15,000

Source of funds for the incentives: GO Topeka/Joint Economic Development Organization (JEDO) and Employer, match at 50%

Employer Benefits

Providing that the employer fully funds $10,000 up to $15,000 with an employee transfer to Topeka:

  • After Year 1, GO Topeka/JEDO reimburse up to $5,000 ($10K) or $7,500 ($15K) to employer for employee retention

2020 Fastest Selling Housing Markets with Proximity to Larger Cities

Seven of the markets with high demand are located very near much larger cities that have a wide range of amenities. Demand may be increasing due to a variety of factors, such as greater affordability compared to the larger city, or demand for more space as a result of the pandemic encouraging social distancing.

Boston

The markets of Worcester, Massachusetts; Melrose, Massachusetts; and Hudson, New Hampshire offer proximity to Boston, one of the most desirable cities on the East Coast noted for history, education, and technology. While Worcester and Hudson are nearly an hour or more drive from Boston, Melrose is just about 20 minutes from downtown.

Columbus

The market of Reynoldsburg, Ohio, offers close proximity to the state’s capital city of Columbus. Home of Ohio State University, Columbus is filled with cultural attractions, theaters, a bustling nightlife, and beautiful historic sections such as German Village.

Denver

The market of Colorado Springs, Colorado is located nearly 80 miles south of downtown Denver. The city is a growing tech hub, with many businesses relocating to or expanding in Denver to gain access to its amenities, surrounding mountains with abundant natural beauty, and highly educated workforce. Growth in Denver and surrounding cities is pushing Colorado Springs to become one of the 2020 fastest selling housing markets.

Portland

The market of South Portland, Maine, shares part of a border with Portland, and is located directly south of the larger city. Portland is the state’s largest metropolitan area and serves as the economic hub of Maine. Offering a beautiful setting along Casco Bay, U.S. News and World Report ranks Portland at #23 in Best Places to Live, and #7 in the Best Places to Live for Quality of Life out of 125 US metropolitan areas.

Washington, DC

The market of Springfield, Virginia offers close proximity to the nation’s capital. Washington is one of the most visited cities in the US, offering an abundance of iconic sights, national history, and cultural attractions. Technically not a city or a town, Springfield is a “census-designated place” in Fairfax County. The place is just about 30 minutes from downtown.

2020 Fastest Selling Housing Markets in Their Own Right

Both Rochester, New York, and Raleigh, North Carolina qualify as a fastest selling market in their own right. Both of these cities may be benefiting from several unique factors such as the “Work from Anywhere” trend, economic growth initiatives, and local housing affordability.

Rochester

Rochester is the third largest metropolitan region in New York. Offering comparatively affordable housing options, with a cost of living index of 78.4, much lower than average. The median home price in Rochester is about $75,000. By comparison, the cost of living index in Manhattan is 258.3, with a median home price of $1,202,300.

Raleigh

Raleigh and its surrounding metropolitan area is a growing tech hub within the Research Triangle Region. The city is also home to SAS, the world’s largest private software company. Raleigh has been noted as one of the Top 10 fastest growing cities in the nation.

What Does This Mean for the 2020 Fastest Selling Housing Markets?

Home buyers with the flexibility to locate in other markets should be aware of the 2020 fastest selling housing markets. With demand increasing and days on market declining, interested buyers should work with knowledgeable and experienced real estate agents. Employers with new hires and transferees who are looking to purchase a home one of the 2020 fastest selling housing markets should work with a Relocation Management Company (RMC). RMCs that have knowledge and experience with relocations are ideal sources for information relating to local housing market requirements.

The GMS network of real estate agents consistently leads the industry in the way its top agents market homes. Each agent has access to the latest technology and best practices for marketing real estate. They will understand how to approach the dynamics of housing markets undergoing extremely high demand.

Conclusion

GMS’ team of domestic relocation experts has helped thousands of our clients understand how to provide solutions for their new hires and transferees who are looking to buy or sell a home. Our network of top agents market homes following industry best practices. They will help home buyers and sellers understand how to be successful in the 2020 fastest selling housing markets.

GMS was the first relocation company to register as a “.com.” The company also created the first online interactive tools and calculators, and revolutionized the entire relocation industry. GMS continues to set the industry pace as the pioneer in innovation and technology solutions with its proprietary MyRelocation® technology platform.

New SafeRelo™ COVID-19 Knowledge Portal

GMS recently launched its new SafeRelo™ COVID-19 Knowledge Portal featuring a number of helpful resources including:

  • Curated selection of news and articles specific to managing relocation programs and issues relating to COVID-19
  • Comprehensive guide to national, international, and local online sources for current data
  • Program/Policy Evaluation (PPE) Tool for instant relocation policy reviews

Contact our experts online to learn more about the 2020 fastest selling housing markets, or give us a call at 800.617.1904 or 480.922.0700 today.

Request your complimentary relocation policy review

Vice President, Real Estate Services Jules has over 21 years of experience as a licensed Real Estate Agent and Broker with operational experience gained from areas throughout the United States. She has held leadership positions such as Broker of Record and Real Estate Specialist, Team Leader, and Branch Manager, and as well as owned her own real estate company, working on U.S. Domestic and Government accounts. As a Team Leader, Jules taught monthly classes in contract writing, and contract negotiating to hundreds of Real Estate Agents.

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