Amarillo made Realtor.com’s top “Top 10 U.S. Cities to Buy Your Starter Home—or Your Forever Home”
Millennials “want to buy near their jobs and amenities. But affordability is the key factor—they are looking for something they can buy without getting over their head,” says Chris Porter, the chief demographer at John Burns Real Estate Consulting in Irvine, CA. “And boomers are retiring and moving to warm climates. … They want a home that requires less upkeep and in a walkable community.”
Amarillo came in at #5 overall for a starter home and the only city in Texas on either list.
The website says:
One of Amarillo’s claims to fame is the Cadillac Ranch, with its array of colorfully spray-painted vintage cars half buried in the ground and sitting straight up like Stonehenge. But don’t confuse the luxury cars as a sign of high local home prices. Amarillo is a low-cost, Texas Panhandle city, sitting at the gateway to the Palo Duro Canyon State Park, about an hour east of New Mexico. First-time buyers here can have their pick of abodes.
“Builders went crazy last year,” says Cinda Lovato, a Realtor®. “There are so many new homes, from as low as $150,000.”
Starter-home seekers are flocking to suburban neighborhoods like Saturn Terrace, where they can find three-bedroom, 1,400-square-foot ranches for under $200,000. Some of these buyers are even as old as 40 or 50 and are tired of renting instead of owning, Lovato says.
“Rent on a three-bedroom, two-bath house is typically $1,500,” she says. “If they bought the home, [the mortgage could] be less than $1,000.”
The rest of the top 10 metros for starter homes are Huntington, WV; Lafayette, IN; Fargo, ND; Waterloo, IA; and Syracuse, NY.
Now let’s look at the best places for folks who are staring down retirement—and beyond.