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Daily Real Estate News  |  April 19, 2011  |   More Americans Flock to the South, West
More Americans are heading to the South and West, according to the 2010 U.S. Census. The latest census data shows the largest population growth in the last decade occurred in areas of the South and West, as Northeast and Midwest residents continued to head toward warmer and less expensive Sun Belt hot-spots.

Populations in the South and West grew 14.3 percent and 13.8 percent, respectively, from 2000 to 2010, while Northeast and Midwest areas grew by only 3.2 percent and 3.9 percent, according to the Census Bureau.

As such, the decade’s hottest housing markets also had the most rapid population growth, including Nevada (35.1 percent growth), Arizona (24.6 percent), and Florida (17.6 percent).

However, demographic factors likely will have less of an impact as it once did in the short-term in driving the housing market and prices, experts say.

Paul Bishop, vice president for research at the National Association of REALTORSŪ, says he expects much of the short-term housing activity to be mostly centered on low and high ends of the market, rather than driven by merely migration patterns. He says investors likely will continue to target highly discounted homes in growing Sun Belt cities as well as in shrinking Rust Belt areas. He also anticipates an increase in sales of expensive homes.

"The stock market has been doing pretty well, which benefits the wealthy," Bishop told Investor’s Business Daily. "And the wealthy can withstand bad economic times better than others."

Source: “Housing Bust Curtails Moves, Great American Migration,” Investor’s Business Daily (April 14, 2011)

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