We know that Midland’s home prices are exploding, mostly thanks to the boost west Texas crude oil is enjoying. But where is everyone moving?
To Texas, of course, and specifically to San Antonio. A recent U.S. Census Bureau report tracked the nation’s fastest-growing cities between 2016 and 2017. San Antonio was the clear winner, with the largest population gain in the country during this period.
Other cities experiencing population gains in that time, according to the U.S. Census Bureau: Phoenix, Arizona (24,000 population growth in 2017); Dallas, Texas (18,900); Fort Worth, Texas (18,700); Los Angeles (18,600); and Seattle, Washington (17,500). All this and Amazon hasn’t yet announced where the company will land their second headquarters.
Of course, I have told you how hot North Texas is, and I’m just not talking about the weather. Lower home prices — you can have a Fort Worth palace for $1 million — open spaces, a growing urban vibe, a can-do spirit and business-friendly attitudes are drawing these people, as are the jobs. Texas is the top go-to state for business, according to CNBC, which scored all 50 states on more than 60 measures of competitiveness, with input from “business and policy experts, official government sources, the CNBC Global CFO Council, YPO and the states themselves.
And who cares about living on the coast if you cannot afford it? Folks from the Bay area, Los Angeles and San Diego are leaving paradise and heading for Texas. Dallas-Fort Worth was one of the top destinations for “domestic migrants” (what a phrase!) from California in 2017, according to a recent Trulia study. In the first quarter of 2017, 1,051 Californians became Texans, or about 5.5%. The largest destination by choice was Las Vegas, which snagged 8.1% of those interstate migrants during the first three months of 2017.
With listing prices across the nation climbing more than 6% annually from 2016 to 2017, these coastal California metros are feeling the heat from rising home prices.
All that house surfing means something: Trulia says there is “substantial overlap between the list of top areas where people move and where they were searching on Trulia in the six to 12 months prior to moving.”
Houston is also a popular destination for people fleeing the California coast — 3% of the migrants in the study came to Texas’ most populous city.
Fort Worth has now surpassed Indianapolis as the 15th largest city in the nation, with a population of almost 875,000. And look at those move-in numbers: Though Dallas is a “bigger city” than Fort Worth, Dallas attracted merely 200 more people than Fort Worth did last year. Cowtown is growing: I was there this week, and folks are saying Fort Worth may actually surpass Dallas in the future. One luxury urban condo, the Omni Residences, built in 2009, sold out new inventory and another luxury condo tower was just approved, the 30 story Worth. In 2015 Facebook built a nearly $1 billion, 110-acre data center in North Fort Worth that brought in 40 plus jobs. Dallas-Fort Worth has become the third largest data center market in the world.
No shocker that among the top 15 cities growing like wildfire on the Census Bureau’s list, seven were Texas cities. The stupendous growth in the Dallas region continues to be zooming north, in Frisco. A small town where American pioneers once drove cattle north, Frisco has busted buttons from 6,000 in 1990 to more than 200,000 today. Frisco is where Jerry Jones built his Frisco Star; the PGA of America is contemplating moving their headquarters from West Palm Beach, Florida to Frisco. Frisco was the Census Bureau’s fastest growing large U.S. city (of 50,000 or more population), busting out at 8.2%. That’s 11 times faster than that of the nation’s overall growth rate of 0.7%.
One of my best sources on North Texas growth is J.P. Piccinini, founder and owner of JP & Associates Realty (JPAR), who recently grew his real estate business south to Austin and San Antonio. Piccinini says he is not done expanding. About all this growth he says, it’s the business climate, baby.
A testament to that is while some markets cool off, the housing markets in these Texas cities continue to be juggernauts of the industry and defy the market. New construction in Texas is providing the much-needed inventory to support demand.
But San Antonio. The city has a distinct Hispanic culture, feels more like a European city than American, is loaded with culture, education, fine universities and colleges, and facilities. The famous Riverwalk is loaded with hotels, restaurants and businesses. It is also the home of the Alamo. More than 24,200 people have moved to San Antonio, an average of 66 people per day moving in, pushing its population to more than 1.5 million.