When you retire or separate from the military, it may be time to settle down and buy a house if you haven’t already done so. Although the housing market crash of 2007 sent chaotic ripples into the world economy, there are plenty of cities that are rapidly expanding. Yahoo! Homes reports that despite predictions of a declining Sun Belt and a move towards crowded northern cities, the fastest growing cities are southern, low density, and boast some of the best housing prices to income ratios. If you’re trying to settle on a new place to live, these cities provide an excellent starting point.
1.Raleigh, North Carolina: Raleigh is the capital of North Carolina and has plenty to love. The climate is humid and the areas renowned oak trees are beautiful, but if the indoors are more your thing there are plenty of theaters, museums, and restaurants. Sports fans can scope out the Carolina Hurricanes as well as the Carolina RailHawks.
2012 population: 1,188,564
Growth since 2000: 47.8%
Growth since 2011: 2.2%
Average Home Selling Price 2012: $229,863
2. Austin, Texas: Hot and humid, Austin is not a place for lovers of cold weather. Its the capital of the Lone Star State and its citizens vow to “Keep Austin Weird” in resolve of their liberal and somewhat eclectic lifestyle. With a thriving music culture, the annual Austin Film Festival, and all the major attractions of a big city, the city of the Violet Crown may be just right for you.
2012 population: 1,834,303
Growth since 2000: 44.9%
Growth since 2011: 3.0%
Average Home Selling Price 2012:$215,000.
3. Las Vegas, Nevada: Despite its self-styled moniker “Entertainment Capital of the World” and party-hard reputation, Las Vegas has experienced an influx or retirees and new families. Aside from the glittering casinos, there are museums, universities, and annual events such as Helldorado Days.
2012 population: 2,000,759
Growth since 2000: 43.6%
Growth since 2011: 1.7%
Average Home Selling Price 2012: $108,204
4. Orlando, Florida: If you’re looking for family-friendly fun, Orlando is known as the “Theme Park Capital of the World.” Check out the Orlando Magic basketball team, or visit one of the many malls or conventions to suit your entertainment needs.
2012 population: 2,223,674
Growth since 2000: 34.2%
Growth since 2011: 2.2%
Average Home Selling Price 2012: $105,500
5. Charlotte, North Carolina: It’s the largest city in North Carolina and the locals are called Charlotteans, but that doesn’t mean they’re showy or pretentious. There are many corporations that place their headquarters in Charlotte including Coca-Cola Bottling, Extended Stay America, and Lending Tree.
2012 population: 2,296,569
Growth since 2000: 32.8%
Growth since 2011: 1.7%
Average Home Selling Price 2012: $169,483
6. Riverside-San Berndardino, California: Living in Riverside is a great way to be near Los Angeles without being in Los Angeles, and there’a an excellent university in the area as well. It hosts many museums and annual festivities, and is situated next to the largest river in Southern California.
2012 population: 4,350,096
Growth since 2000: 32.7%
Growth since 2011: 1.1%
Average Home Selling Price 2012: $216,200
7. Phoenix, Arizona: Phoenix is not only the largest city in Arizona, but the largest capital city in the United Sates. The summers are hot and the winters are warm, and the surrounding land is mostly arid. Phoenix hosts museums, fine art centers, as well as several universities.
2012 population: 4.329,534
Growth since 2000: 32.1%
Growth since 2011: 1.8%
Average Home Selling Price 2012: $136,500
8. Houston, Texas: It’s the most populated city in the United States and is second only to New York in hosting Fortune 500 companies. Houston was ranked by Forbes as number one in paycheck worth in 2012, and there is a broad base of industry including energy, manufacturing, aeronautics, and transportation.
2012 population: 6,177,035
Growth since 2000: 31.0%
Growth since 2011: 2.1%
Average Home Selling Price 2012: $80,000
9. San Antonio, Texas: With five military bases, San Antonio is a very military-friendly city. It’s home to multiple big league sports teams, five Fortune 500 companies, and multiple universities. There are plenty of attractions including the San Antonio river and, of course the Alamo.
2012 population: 2,234,003
Growth since 2000: 29.9%
Growth since 2011: 1.9%
Average Home Selling Price 2012: $76,000
10. Dallas-Fort Woth, Texas: The largest metropolitan area in the South, Dallas-Ft Worth is commonly considered the cultural and economic hub of northern Texas. It holds the tenth largest GMP in the world, and its economy is drive by a diversity of industries such as farming and defense manufacturing.
2012 population: 6,700,991
Growth since 2000: 27.9%
Growth since 2011: 2.0%
Average Home Selling Price 2012: $133,100