The housing market is in a unique situation as mortgage rates have hit record lows at a time when many Americans are struggling financially because of the COVID-19 pandemic. For those who have extra cash, financial website WalletHub states, buying a home now could be a golden opportunity.
To determine the best real estate markets, WalletHub compared 300 cities across two key dimensions: real estate market, and affordability and economic environment.
WalletHub evaluated those dimensions using 24 relevant metrics, each graded on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the healthiest housing market.
Each city was categorized according to the following population guidelines:
- Large city: more than 300,000 residents
- Midsize city: 150,000 to 300,000 residents
- Small city: fewer than 150,000 residents
Cities were ranked overall, then broken out by size. Seven Georgia cities made the list, but only one was in the top 100.
Athens-Clarke finished No. 75 overall, with a score of 58.65. Athens falls into the small city category, where it ranked No. 27. It’s not all good news for the area, however. The city ranked No. 298 for highest maintenance costs as a percentage of income.
There are nearly 100 cities between Athens-Clarke and the next Georgia city. Atlanta ranked No. 172, with a score of 53.96. Atlanta is the state’s only big city in the rankings, landing at No. 26.
The state’s other five cities on the list are:
Augusta (53.66): overall rank of 177; midsize rank of 66
Roswell (52): overall rank of 209; small city rank of 93
Columbus (51.89): overall rank of 211; midsize rank of 73
Savannah (51.01): overall rank of 226; small city rank of 100
Sandy Springs(46.65): over rank of 273; small city rank of 120
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Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com