Americans have been on a home-buying spree for the past year. Demand has been so hot that buyers are offering well over asking prices, paying competing bidders to go away, and even sweetening the deal by offering sellers paid vacations and fancy wines on the side. CNN reported in June that a buyer relocating from San Francisco to Austin agreed to buy a second home from a seller in addition to the one he wanted, and paid above the asking prices for both. (Both places, perhaps not surprisingly, are among the 25 cities with the most billionaires.)
Though the so-called “urban exodus” has been exaggerated by some media outlets — nationally, the migration rate remains close to its historical low — America’s largest metro regions, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, have seen an unusually high relocation rate.
While many people left the big cities for suburban or rural areas in hopes of escaping the worst of the pandemic, many others moved from one metropolis to another as their employment or family situations changed. This elective mobility, coupled with low-cost mortgages and significant stock gains for some investors in the wake of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2016, has exacerbated a housing crisis in the most populated regions of the country.
The huge spike in demand for houses in certain areas has made home ownership out of reach for many first-time buyers — for instance, millennial-aged new parents who would ordinarily have had enough of a down payment and good credit to finance a home purchase. (These are the cities where housing values are rising the fastest.)
According to the Wall Street Journal, though, inventories of luxury homes (defined as those worth at least $1 million) are beginning to catch up to demand, “bringing a crazy seller’s market back to earth.” 24/7 Wall St. has assembled a list of the major cities around the country with the highest proportion of luxury homes for sale — at least for now.
To identify the cities with the most luxury homes for sale, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed a recent report by the real estate analytics and news site Point2 on the share of luxury listings in 30 large U.S. cities. We based the ranking on each city’s share home listings above $1 million. The percentage of home listings above $3 million, $5 million, as well as each city’s median home price also came from Point2’s report. All types of residential properties were considered, including houses, townhouses, condos, coops, apartments, and more, and the study was based on all active listings as of July 5 2021. Population figures were obtained from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 American Community Survey.