Metropolitan Phoenix’s rising home prices still look like bargains for Californians and buyers from other U.S. areas, where houses cost twice as much.
A growing number of people are looking to move to the Valley from Los Angeles, Seattle and Denver, a recent study shows.
So many people from those pricier housing markets searched for homes in metro Phoenix this year that the Valley topped a recent list of areas expected to see the biggest inflow of residents from those cities and others.
Almost 34 percent of potential homebuyers searching for houses in the Valley live outside the area, national real estate firm Redfin reports.
Redfin tracks more than 1 million home searches across the United States for its quarterly report, launched early last year.
This is the first time Phoenix has topped its list for drawing the most prospective home shoppers looking to move from other big cities.
A look at the median home prices in the areas where people want to move to Phoenix from explains a lot.
Phoenix’s median home price was about $261,000 when Redfin did its survey earlier this year.
In Los Angeles, the typical house cost almost $550,000 during this year’s first quarter, according to the National Association of Realtors.
Home prices and sales have both recently dipped in the California city.
The median price in Seattle was $485,000, where the rising number of homes for sale is putting pressure on prices and closings.
Denver’s median climbed about 12 percent during the past year to reach $442,000. For the first time, the Redfin study found more home shoppers searched outside of Denver than in it.
About 86 percent of the Valley’s home shoppers searching Redfin are looking to stay in the area, the data show.
Of course, metro Phoenix looks incredibly affordable by just comparing home prices. But what homebuyers can earn in an area is key to what they can afford to buy.
The median household income in metro Phoenix is about $60,000.
The median annual household income in Los Angeles is about $62,000. In Seattle, it’s close to $85,000.
And Denver’s typical household earns almost $73,000.
Combine income with home prices and those beaches and cool temperatures apparently aren't quite so attractive. Despite the heat, it's pretty clear why the Valley is drawing more residents and potential homebuyers from the other cities.