Austin, TX, is the best city in the U.S. for high-paying jobs and affordability, according to a new study from personal finance website NerdWallet. Denver came in second, followed by Nashville, TN, Seattle and Durham, NC, to round out the top five spots.
The report rated the country’s 100-largest cities by federal unemployment and workforce growth data. It also factored in median earnings and rent prices.
- A common factor among the cities to make the list was the presence of major employers in rapidly growing sectors like technology and health care. Additionally, nine of the 10 cities reported a higher percentage of young adults than the average.
Many cities in NerdWallet’s top 10, including Austin and Denver, are seeing population levels rise, particularly among younger people, driven largely by employment growth. The trend is exposing a gap in the housing supply chain, pushing up home and rental prices alike, while wages struggle to keep pace.
A report last month by BiggerPockets, a social networking website for real estate investors, named Austin, Denver and Seattle as cities where investors can yield the greatest return on residential real estate.
In its 2017 housing forecast, real estate website Realtor.com found that millennials are looking inland in greater numbers rather than moving to job centers on the East and West coasts. In cities like Madison, WI; Columbus, OH; Omaha, NE; Des Moines, IA; and Minneapolis, millennials make up a larger share of homebuyers than they do nationally, according to Realtor.com.
Another common feature of cities on recent housing market affordability lists is location, as many are in the Midwest.
"There is a huge disparity in how many dollars are needed to get a home in Des Moines versus San Francisco," Realtor.com Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke told Construction Dive in November. "Affordability is a key part of why millennials are deciding to move [to the Midwest] or stay where they have been, as opposed to staying where they are."
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