Prospective Home Buyers’ Migration Patterns Increase

Redfin, Seattle, said 22 percent of its web site users searched for homes outside their home metro in the third quarter, up slightly from 21 percent in the second quarter and 20 percent in the first quarter.

The company’s quarterly Migration Report analyzed 75 metro areas from July through September. It said Nashville appeared among the top 10 migration destinations for the first time last quarter. Nearly one-third of all users searching for homes in Nashville were searching from another metro the area, among which just over a quarter (25.6%) searched from New York.

The survey also noted many cities experiencing a high net inflow of homebuyers were also places with higher than average rates of residential construction activity per capita. Conversely, metros experiencing net outflow tended to have lower than average rates of new construction.

Seven of the 10 metros with the highest net inflow had more permitted units than the national average. Nashville was also among the metros with the highest rates of new permit activity at 27 permitted new residential units per 10,000 residents. The metro areas poised to build the most new homes in the coming months are Houston (10,000), Dallas (9,400), Phoenix (7,800) and Atlanta (7,700).

The third quarter also saw continuation of several trends that dominated migration patterns in the first half of the year, including affordable, mid-tier metros such as Sacramento, Phoenix and Atlanta drew prospective homebuyers from expensive coastal cities; the South and Sunbelt continued to see more incoming than outgoing searches; and Rust Belt cities of Detroit, Dayton and Milwaukee experienced a net outflow of user searches.