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Smaller Markets Gaining Attention Across the Nation

Realtor.com reports that smaller markets are becoming attractive across the nation, with the hottest real estate market for August being Fort Wayne, Indiana. 

The report states that what some of the smaller markets lack in recognition, they “more than make up for it” in affordability. 

"Smaller markets with smaller price tags continue to heat up feverishly," says Javier Vivas, realtor.com's Director of Economic research. "Buyers have more success in markets that have plentiful supplies of homes below $200,000 in the Northeast and the Midwest. In the West and the Southwest, we're seeing alternatives to the pricey, larger cities make the list."

Median home prices in Fort Wayne were $162,000 as of August 1. Realtor.com states that the small industrial city about two miles northeast of Indianapolis, has a revitalized downtown area, a new waterfront park, new shops and restaurants, and a professional soccer team that will begin play next season. 

"We have been one of the most affordable places in the U.S. for decades," says Re/Max Results agent Tug Pierson. "Because of local, economic growth, we are attracting startups and new employers—so the job market is expanding.”

The report states that buyers are looking to spend between $150,000 and $300,000 out of the downtown area. The lower-priced homes will fetch buyers a newly-built, three bedroom, two bathroom home coming in around 1,400-square-feet. 

Competition in Fort Wayne, though, is fierce.

“If something comes on the market at 2 a.m., I’m getting texts from buyers at 6 or 7 a.m." says Pierson. Multiple bids and offers over asking price aren't uncommon, and he's seeing more out-of-state buyers. There’s not a month that goes by that I don't get a call from someone from Illinois, Washington state, Oregon.”

Joining Fort Wayne on this list was: Pueblo, Colorado; Midland, Texas; Rochester, New York; Columbus, Ohio; Buffalo, New York; Lafayette, Indiana; Kennewick, Wasington; Spokane, Washington; and Manchester, New Hampshire. 

Fort Wayne was listed at No. 13 in July 2018  and jumped all the way to No. 1. Buffalo recorded the largest rise, jumping form No. 48 last year to No. 6. 

About Author: Mike Albanese

A graduate of the University of Alabama, Mike Albanese has worked for news publications since 2011 in Texas and Colorado. He has built a portfolio of more than 1,000 articles, covering city government, police and crime, business, sports, and is experienced in crafting engaging features and enterprise pieces. He spent time as the sports editor for the "Pilot Point Post-Signal," and has covered the DFW Metroplex for several years. He has also assisted with sports coverage and editing duties with the "Dallas Morning News" and "Denton Record-Chronicle" over the past several years.

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