With home values rising faster than incomes in most markets, the housing market has become increasingly unaffordable for many would-be homebuyers. Even markets that are generally affordable, such as those in the Midwest and the South, have pockets of unbridled demand driving up prices. As a result, first-time buyers who aren’t already sitting on a pile of equity are facing even steeper barriers to entry.
If you’re thinking about buying a home, you might want to consider one of the more affordable markets outside of high-priced coastal cities. Fortunately, there are still plenty of great real estate deals out there if you know where to look.
With so much attention given to the top-end markets such as San Francisco or New York City, we often overlook smaller markets with great opportunities for value investors. Among these underappreciated yet affordable markets is Allegheny County in Pennsylvania.
Allegheny County Real Estate: A Safe Haven for Home Buyers
The housing market in the U.S. has been trying to recover from the effects of the Great Recession for almost a decade. But when it comes to real estate, not all markets are created equal. Some local housing markets are still struggling to rebound, while others have managed to remain relatively stable even in light of economic headwinds.
And what about real estate in Pittsburgh and its surrounding communities? How is the housing market in Allegheny County doing? Let’s take a closer look at the current state of real estate in this region, as well as its potential future market performance based on several factors such as affordability, job creation, housing stock availability, and more.
The State of Housing in Allegheny County
Before we get into the future of Allegheny County real estate, let’s start by taking a closer look at the state of the local housing market right now. The following statistics provide a snapshot of the current state of housing in the Pittsburgh area — and they show that Pittsburgh home buyers are in a pretty good position right now.
• Strong local economy – The Pittsburgh metro area is home to a healthy mix of industries, including healthcare, education, and a growing tech sector. This strong foundation for economic growth is an important factor in the future of Allegheny County real estate.
• Low unemployment rate – Another factor that bodes well for local real estate is the low unemployment rate in Allegheny County. The county’s unemployment rate has consistently hovered below the national average over the past decade, suggesting that there are more job opportunities in the region than elsewhere in the country.
• High rate of homeownership – According to the most recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau, more than half of the households in Allegheny County are homeowners. This suggests that there is a healthy demand for residential real estate in the region.
The Future of Real Estate in Allegheny County
Now that we’ve taken a closer look at the current state of Allegheny County real estate, let’s look ahead to see what the future might hold for the local housing market. In order to get a better sense of the potential future of local real estate, it’s important to consider several key factors, including economic growth and job creation, consumer confidence, and housing supply. As we’ve discussed, the local economy has a big influence on real estate demand.
In addition, consumer confidence also plays a key role in a region’s real estate market. When consumers are confident about their financial situation and their future prospects, they tend to be more willing to buy real estate. On the other hand, if consumers are concerned about their financial security or the state of the economy, they may be less willing to buy a home. So a crucial question for the future of Allegheny County real estate is how consumers in the region feel about their financial situation.
The Importance of Location
Another factor that has a significant impact on real estate in Allegheny County is location. For example, building costs in Pittsburgh are higher than in many other parts of the country.
This is due in part to the region’s harsh winters, which can pose a challenge to construction crews working indoors. In addition to more challenging construction conditions, the local housing stock is also less diverse than in other parts of the country. The Pittsburgh area is known for its abundance of older homes — many of which are Craftsman, Colonial Revival, Tudor, or Victorian style.
Economic Growth and Job Creation
Economic growth and job creation are closely linked to real estate. In fact, a healthy job market is one of the most important factors in the future of any real estate market.
A healthy job market means that there are more people with the financial means to buy a home. In addition, a healthy job market means that there are more people who are able to buy a home using a mortgage loan. Mortgage loans are critical to the health of the local real estate market — especially in the Pittsburgh area, where homeownership rates are higher than the national average.
Consumer Confidence and Housing Supply
Consumer confidence and housing supply are closely linked to the future of real estate in the Pittsburgh area. A healthy housing supply means that there are more options for homebuyers — which can have a positive impact on real estate in the Pittsburgh area.
On the other hand, a low housing supply can drive up the cost of real estate and make it more difficult for homebuyers to find a place they can afford. When the supply of homes is low, the cost of real estate tends to increase as homeowners can get more for their property.
Now that we’ve taken a closer look at the current state of Allegheny County real estate and the factors that could impact its future, let’s wrap things up by looking at a few key takeaways.
First, it’s important to remember that the housing market is unique in every region of the U.S. The local economy, employment opportunities, and other factors have a significant impact on real estate demand. So the state of real estate in Pittsburgh may be very different from other areas.
Real estate is a cyclical market, and different regions experience cycles at different rates. Some markets have yet to recover from the effects of the Great Recession, while others seem to be well on their way to recovery. In order to get a better sense of the future of real estate in the Pittsburgh area, it’s important to consider the factors that could impact its performance.