Emerging housing markets keep pace in 2015

March 30 03:57 2015

Industry experts say emerging housing markets are positioned to compete with major markets such as New York, Boston and Washington in 2015. With lower costs of living and better-than-average employment opportunities, these up-and-coming cities may be just the place to call home.635630666811495066-HOME15-RealEstate1

The fourth-most populous city in the country, Houston earned the No. 1 spot in the 2015 U.S. Markets to Watch list, part of a comprehensive industry report, “Emerging Trends in Real Estate,” prepared by the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

The pick demonstrates the resilience of the Texas economy, says Jed Kolko, chief economist for real estate website Trulia. Texas, he says, was lucky enough to avoid a lot of the pain from the housing bust. “It is less hungover than other markets,” he explains. According to the report, Houston has an employment concentration in technology and energy that is greater than the national average, and investors see this as an opportunity for growth. Over the last year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in Houston rose 4.3 percent, whereas employment in the country overall rose 2 percent.

Austin- This quirky, cosmopolitan city with a robust art and live music scene came in second on the U.S. Markets to Watch list. The high-tech industry is booming (Dropbox, IBM and Oracle announced major expansions in the last year), and the metro area has considerable job growth prospects. The Texas capital saw significant urban growth (8.6 percent) over the last year, according to the ULI and PwC report. “Survey respondents and interviewees like the industrial base, the appeal to the millennial generation and the lower cost of doing business in Austin,” the report says.