The share of U.S. homebuyers looking to move to a different city declined for the third straight month in November, according to a new report from Redfin.
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The share of homebuyers looking to relocate continued to drop off in November as the pandemic relocation frenzy slows, according to a new report.
The report, released last week by Redfin, found that the share of U.S. homebuyers looking to move to a different city declined for the third straight month in November to 23.9 percent, the lowest share recorded in a year and a half.
It’s also down just a drop from the levels recorded in November 2022, when 24.1 percent of homebuyers were looking to relocate. While that decrease of 0.2 percent is small, it’s the first annual decrease in Redfin’s records, according to the report.
The share of homebuyers looking to relocate decreased throughout 2023 as overall homebuying activity decreased due to the prohibitively expensive cost of mortgage loans. That, combined with a severe shortage of housing inventory, made 2023 the least affordable year for housing on record, according to Redfin.
There were 4 percent fewer Redfin users looking to move to a new city in November than compared to a year earlier and 3 percent fewer users searching for a new home within their current metropolitan area, according to the report.
The cost of buying a home isn’t the only reason fewer people are looking to change cities. There is less flexibility to work remotely as employers call workers back to the office, with remote work being the catalyst for much of the pandemic relocation frenzy. This has considerably slowed the flow of migrants to popular relocation destinations like Boise, Idaho, and Austin, Texas.
Additionally, the cost of housing in those popular relocation destinations has increased at an even faster rate than the coastal metros most people were relocating from, making the savings less compelling than they would have been at the onset of the pandemic.
The migration rate still remains above pre-pandemic levels of about 19 percent, however, as some buyers still seek out more affordable locales. All 10 of the top migration destinations in November had lower prices than the most common origin of buyers moving in, according to the report, with Sacramento topping the list and attracting relocators from nearby San Francisco.
Sacramento was followed by Las Vegas, which mostly drew people From Los Angeles, and North Port-Sarasota, Florida, was most popular among New Yorkers.
Among the top 10 cities people are leaving, Los Angeles topped the list for the first time in November with an outflow of 26,100. It was followed by San Francisco with its outflow of 25,400 and New York City with 24,900.