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Realtor.com® Deurbanization Report: The Grass is Greener in the Suburbs

SANTA CLARA, Calif., Sept. 25, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Driven by a desire for more space, affordable homes, and a new-found freedom to work remotely, a deurbanization trend has emerged among homebuyers, according to new data released today by realtor.com®. While housing markets in both suburban and urban areas recovered rapidly post-COVID shut down, suburban markets have experienced more interest from home shoppers, stronger improvement of price growth, and quicker home sales than urban areas this summer.

"In one of the most seismic shifts to the U.S. workforce since the introduction of the Internet, many U.S. workers now have the flexibility to work remotely and choose where they want to live," said realtor.com®'s Chief Economist, Danielle Hale. "Data shows in our post-COVID world there's a strong preference towards a suburban lifestyle with its bigger houses, backyards, and quiet streets. But American cities are not becoming ghost towns anytime soon; in fact they are also seeing an uptick of homebuyers, it's just not as strong as the surge we're seeing in the suburbs."

Home price growth in the suburbs has improved more quickly during the pandemic

Properties in both suburban and urban areas are flying off the market, but suburban homes are selling much more quickly than last year 

"Based on the rising popularity of the burbs, some buyers might think they can catch a break by searching in the city, but unfortunately that's not the case. Rising home prices and fast home sales are everywhere. If you're a buyer in today's market, finding and closing on your dream home is not going to be easy," noted Hale.

Suburban homes for sale are evaporating as more and more buyers flock to the suburbs

Online home shopping habits have shown a growing preference for suburban homes



Listing Price
Growth Y/Y

Time Spent on
Market Y/Y

Inventory Growth

Home Shopper Count


Urban: 7.7%

Suburban: 7.3%

Urban: -8.0%

Suburban: -11.4%

Urban: -34.3%

Suburban: -41.2%

Urban: 50.7%

Suburban: 53.9%

New York-Newark-Jersey City, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa.

Urban: 2.1%

Suburban: 5.6%

Urban: -27.3%

Suburban: -26.9%

Urban: 18.6%

Suburban: -28.0%

Urban: 47.8%

Suburban: 86.4%

Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, Calif.

Urban: 3.0%

Suburban: 4.4%

Urban: 31.8%

Suburban: -0.8%

Urban: 14.4%

Suburban: -36.1%

Urban: 44.4%

Suburban: 52.1%

Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, Ill.-Ind.-Wis.

Urban: 0.2%

Suburban: 2.4%

Urban: -11.9%

Suburban: -6.2%

Urban: -29.2%

Suburban: -42.8%

Urban: 41.2%

Suburban: 58.0%

Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas

Urban: 4.5%

Suburban: 5.6%

Urban: -11.7%

Suburban: -6.5%

Urban: -37.7%

Suburban: -41.9%

Urban: 36.4%

Suburban: 44.8%

Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, Texas

Urban: 4.8%

Suburban: 4.2%

Urban: -4.4%

Suburban: -3.4%

Urban: -12.3%

Suburban: -36.2%

Urban: 30.5%

Suburban: 40.1%

Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, Pa.-N.J.-Del.-Md.

Urban: 10.4%

Suburban: 9.8%

Urban: -24.2%

Suburban: -35.1%

Urban: -42.6%

Suburban: -50.2%

Urban: 42.7%

Suburban: 56.4%

Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-Va.-Md.-W. Va.

Urban: 0.4%

Suburban: 4.7%

Urban: -27.9%

Suburban: -36.4%

Urban: -16.0%

Suburban: -53.6%

Urban: 56.2%

Suburban: 59.4%

Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, Fla.

Urban: -2.2%

Suburban: 0.3%

Urban: 4.5%

Suburban: -5.9%

Urban: -3.9%

Suburban: -20.6%

Urban: 61.7%

Suburban: 71.6%

Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, Ga.

Urban: 5.0%

Suburban: 8.5%

Urban: -1.3%

Suburban: -7.8%

Urban: -28.9%

Suburban: -48.4%

Urban: 37.9%

Suburban: 45.8%

Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Mass.-N.H.

Urban: -0.4%

Suburban: 6.0%

Urban: -32.1%

Suburban: -32.8%

Urban: 4.0%

Suburban: -43.7%

Urban: 36.8%

Suburban: 48.8%

* In August, prices grew by 7.7% over last year for urban areas and 7.3% for suburban areas, up from 5.4% and 4.1% in March, respectively.

About realtor.com®
Realtor.com® makes buying, selling and living in homes easier and more rewarding for everyone. Realtor.com® pioneered the world of digital real estate 20 years ago, and today through its website and mobile apps is a trusted source for the information, tools and professional expertise that help people move confidently through every step of their home journey. Using proprietary data science and machine learning technology, realtor.com® pairs buyers and sellers with local agents in their market, helping take the guesswork out of buying and selling a home. For professionals, realtor.com® is a trusted provider of consumer connections and branding solutions that help them succeed in today's on-demand world. Realtor.com® is operated by News Corp [Nasdaq: NWS, NWSA] [ASX: NWS, NWSLV] subsidiary Move, Inc. under a perpetual license from the National Association of REALTORS®. For more information, visit realtor.com®.

Media Contacts: 
Cody Horvat, cody.horvat@move.com

SOURCE realtor.com

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