Most Popular Cities For Relocating in WA To Get a Better Deal on a Home

October 18, 2019
Last updated:
February 14, 2024
In This Article

Many people are looking to buy homes: not across the street, not somewhere else in town, but in other parts of the country. The motivator for this is that there are significant differences in the median prices for home sales in different parts of the US. 

After all, the median price for homes varies a great deal from one market to another. This is not a result of the places being undesirable.

In fact, many of the places with excellent values in home prices are very desirable. In these attractive cities, the lower prices are more about the local economy, the cost of living, and the availability of homes for sale.

The question is, where are the lowest prices for homes in Washington State? What are the most popular cities for relocating in WA for this purpose?

Most Popular Cities For Relocating in WA

A study done by REALTOR® identified the most popular cities that people search for when looking for a new home in another area that is different from where they currently live.

The median home price in the US is $342,941 according to the Federal Reserve Economic Data. In Washington State, the average home price is now around $563,764. The Evergreen State is clearly more expensive than the national average, but it also boasts a lot of positive aspects about it that make it a desirable state to live in. 

Areavibes ranks American cities based on a livability score that considers many factors, which include the cost of living, crime, school, employment, and amenities. The livability score is a scale that goes up to 100.

Related: WA Housing Market Forecast

Here are the top choices in the order of their popularity for searches and median home prices in WA State, according to real estate research firm Zillow, along with their livability score:

  • Richland, WA – Median home price is $444,267. Livability score is 52.
  • Vancouver, WA – Median home price is $483,765. Livability score is 58.
  • Spokane, WA – Median home price is $371,192. Livability score is 55.
  • Pullman, WA – Median home price is $411,613. Livability score is 55.
  • Pasco, WA: Median home price is $399,933. Livability score is 48.

View WA State Mortgage Rates

Cost Of Living

The cost of living is a big factor that impacts the quality of life for the average person. The cost of living includes the cost of housing, groceries, transportation, health care, utilities, and other goods and services. The national standard for America’s cost of living is set at 100.

The cost of living index in each city is a number that is higher or lower than 100. Higher figures than 100 represent a percentage higher than the national average. Lower numbers than 100 are cities that cost less than other cities in America.

Here is the cost of living index for these popular cities:

  • Richland, WA – 143
  • Vancouver, WA – 100
  • Spokane, WA – 102
  • Pullman, WA – 144
  • Pasco, WA – 115

The lower the cost of living, the more money residents will have available to them to spend on things aside from housing costs.

By keeping housing costs low, residents won’t have to worry about being ‘house poor’, which can place undue financial stress on homeowners who are spending a large chunk of their income on homeownership and other costs related to maintaining a certain standard of living,

Factors That Make a City More ‘Livable’

There are several factors that make a city more livable to residents. These include the following:

  • Low cost of living
  • Low crime rate
  • High-rated schools
  • Lots of amenities
  • Close proximity to health care centers
  • Roadway infrastructure
  • Comfortable climate

When it comes to the above-mentioned centers in WA State, they check all these boxes, which is why they’re such desirable places to live.

These are all great cities to live in. For those who have the option to relocate and to get a better price when buying a home, these should all be considered as decent choices.

Where Are the Most Expensive Areas in Washington State?

To help better understand the cost of homes in the above-mentioned cities, and their affordability, compare them to the more expensive areas in Washington State:

  • Sammamish: $1,465,544
  • Bellevue: $1,300,824
  • Redmond: $1,233,011
  • Kirkland: $1,102,472
  • Issaquah: $1,031,581
  • Bothell: $973,517
  • Seattle: $815,858
  • Edmonds: $843,276
  • Renton: $701,779

As you can see, the cost of homes in these cities are significantly higher, and in some cases may be triple the price of homes in other areas of the Evergreen State.

Why Make a Move in Today’s Market?

Today may be the perfect time to make a move onto any one of these real estate markets in Washington State, despite the rapid rise in home prices.

In fact, the increase in property values is one great reason why you should consider buying a home in these centers, among others, in Washington or any other state in the Pacific Northwest.

That’s because you’ll have the distinct opportunity to take advantage of building home equity quickly, which you can take advantage of as profit when you eventually sell your home, or to be tapped into in the form of a home equity loan if you ever need a large sum of money to cover a pressing expense at some point in the future.

Check out how much home prices have increased (or decreased) in each of the above-mentioned Washington State cities over the past 12 months:

  • Richland: +1.3%
  • Vancouver: +3.2%
  • Spokane: -0.3% 
  • Pullman: +3.1%
  • Pasco: +3.0%

Imagine if you had bought a home this time last year, now imagine how much appreciation in value you could have benefitted from! This is the beauty of buying a home, especially in real estate markets that are healthy.

In addition to the rapid rise in property values in these cities, you’ll also be able to take advantage of super-low mortgage interest rates, which makes homebuying more affordable.

As of February 2024, the interest rates for mortgages are as follows, depending on the type of home loan product you choose:

If you’re ready to make a move to a more affordable housing market in a desirable area that still offers the opportunity to build healthy home equity, team up with the pros in real estate and mortgages.

Get an Instant Mortgage Rate Quote Today

Have Questions About Mortgages?

Sammamish Mortgage is a local, family-owned company based in Bellevue, Washington. We serve the entire state, as well as the broader Pacific Northwest region that includes Oregon, Colorado, and Idaho. We offer a wide variety of mortgage programs and products with flexible qualification criteria since 1992. Please contact us if you have mortgage-related questions.

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