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‘Short Commute Time’ No Longer Helps Home Values

The pandemic changed things: Home values for properties with long commute times are rising faster than units in or near metro areas.

NEW YORK – In some of the nation’s most expensive metro areas, home prices rose faster in areas with longer morning commutes to business districts than they did in neighborhoods with short commutes, according to a Zillow analysis.

That’s a reversal from prior years. Home prices in metro areas have traditionally accelerated faster in neighborhoods close to job centers.

The results, according to analysts, show that commute length has declined in importance among homebuyers, likely because many workers expect to travel to their offices less often.

In metro areas where the downtown job centers are traditionally cheaper to live in than the suburbs, home buyers still sought out affordability, the analysis found.

Nationwide, median home prices in areas with few public transportation options rose 32.8% between January 2020 and May 2021; meanwhile, while home prices in transit-accessible neighborhoods rose 15.6% in the same period, according to Redfin Corp.

Source: Wall Street Journal (07/21/21) Friedman, Nicole

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