Research provided by Point2:

Living in the city can have many perks, but the opportunity to become a homeowner is not one of them for many renters and home seekers.  However, living in the suburbs can make your homeownership dream come true.

The prices of homes for sale in cities like San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles, and New York are famously unaffordable. So much so, in fact, that owning a home in these powerhouse cities is becoming an impossible dream for many.

Adding fuel to the fire, interest rates continue their climb, while dwindling inventory is making all aspiring homebuyers feel like unwilling participants in a game of musical chairs, forcing many home seekers to simply give up on their dreams to have a home of their own.

Given how expensive these urban hubs are, any renter and potential buyer would be forgiven for thinking they need to move to another state to find something affordable. But perhaps that’s not the case.

Enter the suburb.

With its more spacious homes and downright sprawling backyards, the suburb quickly became the answer to our growing space needs during the pandemic. Could it also be the answer to today’s buyers’ prayers for affordable housing?

According to our latest analysis, the answer is yes: The price per square foot of living space is lower in 603 of the 777 suburbs orbiting America’s 20 most expensive cities, with some suburbs boasting prices per square foot up to 65% lower compared to the main city. Thus, homebuyers willing to extend their home search to a 30-mile distance around their city of choice have a much better chance of finding not just a home, but the right home.

The Largest Net Difference in Price per Square Foot Is in Novato, CA, ($401 Cheaper Than San Francisco)

Here are the percentages of affordable suburbs in five of the most expensive cities in the US:

  • San Jose: 32%
  • Charleston, SC: 41%
  • San Francisco, CA: 54%
  • Oakland, CA: 56%
  • Sacramento, CA: 57%

This means there are still affordable opportunities to buy a home, even if you live or work in some of the most expensive cities in the country.