These shrinking California cities are still seeing home values skyrocket – KTXL FOX 40 Sacramento

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(NEXSTAR) – If people are moving out of a city, it must mean it’s an undesirable place to live, right? Not true, new data analysis shows. Once again, the California real estate market seems to defy the norm.

Several California cities with shrinking populations saw home values spike by more than 20% over the same time period, a new analysis by MoneyGeek shows. Dozens of others saw more modest gains, between 10% and 20%.


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The biggest jumps were found in wealthy cities and suburbs, like the beachside communities of Carlsbad, Santa Barbara and Newport Beach, or the family-friendly San Ramon and Pleasanton.

Carlsbad, for example, lost about 1% of its population between 2021 and 2022. But even with people leaving the city, home values went up more than 25% in that same year. Over the next few years, home values continued to climb – nearly 58% in just three years.

Even larger cities like San Bernardino and San Jose also saw impressive home value gains, despite shrinking populations.

In at least 23 California cities where populations shrank between 2021 and 2022, home values went up by more than 15% over that same time period. In every case, home values have gone up even more since then.

See the data on California cities where home prices are jumping despite population declines:

City Home Value Change (2021–22) Population Change (2021–22) Home Value Change (2021–24)
1. Carlsbad 25.5% -1.0% 57.6%
2. Santa Barbara 25.1% -0.8% 45.8%
3. San Ramon 23.7% -1.1% 41.1%
4. Newport Beach 21.9% -0.9% 47.3%
5. Pleasanton 20.6% -2.0% 36.6%
6. Lake Forest 20.3% -0.1% 43.4%
7. Mission Viejo 19.7% -0.7% 44.1%
8. Yorba Linda 18.9% -1.3% 38.8%
9. Costa Mesa 18.7% -1.1% 38.9%
10. Tustin 18.6% -1.3% 42.3%
11. Vista 18.5% -0.9% 41.7%
12. San Bernardino 17.7% -0.8% 38.4%
13. Huntington Beach 17% -1.2% 36.7%
14. Chino Hills 17% -1% 34.9%
15. Elk Grove 16.7% -0.8% 28.4%
16. Fremont 16.1% -1.6% 30.2%
17. Palmdale 15.7% -1.4% 30.4%
18. San Jose 15.5% -1.2% 27.7%
19. Rialto 15.5% -0.8% 33.4%
20. Union City 15.4% -2.4% 31.8%
21. Lancaster 15.4% -0.6% 29.2%
22. Fullerton 15.3% -0.9% 31.4%
23. Orange 15.1% -0.8% 33.8%
California cities where the population shrunk more than 0.5% but home prices rose by more than 15% between 2021 and 2022. (Data: MoneyGeek)

Dozens more shrinking California cities saw home prices jump up by 10% between 2021 and 2022, despite losing people to out-of-town moves. (See the full dataset from MoneyGeek here.)

MoneyGeek looked at Census and housing data for 625 cities with populations larger than 60,000 to compile its dataset.

California was one of eight states that saw its population shrink last year, according to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau last month. The shrinkage was small, granted, with only a 0.2% drop in population between July 2022 and July 2023.

But some of the largest cities and towns in the Golden State saw more dramatic drops. Anaheim and Long Beach, for example, both lost nearly 1% of their populations in a single year.

Nationwide, the fastest-growing communities are found in the Sun Belt, and in the outskirts of larger metro areas. Texas is the No. 1 out-of-state target for people leaving California, but that trend has been diminishing in the past couple years.

This post was originally published on 3rd party site mentioned on the title of this site

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