If you’re thinking about relocating and taking your real estate career with you, a new report from Goodcall might help you determine the best places to relocate as a new agent. Goodcall is a research and data service that provides consumers with information and guidance regarding personal finance, career choices, academic scholarships, and much more. The organization recently published 2015’s Best Metro Areas For Real Estate Agents, which studied 150 metropolitan areas across the U.S. to determine which are the likeliest hunting grounds for beginning or aspiring residential real estate agents.
Goodcall based its conclusions on the following criteria:
- Median real estate agent salary
- Employment (job density, job competition, and job availability)
- Housing affordability (percent income spent on rent)
- Amenities per 1,000 housing units
- Housing market health index
- Average days a house is on the market
- Average ratio of house sale price to house list price
Top Ten Best Places to Relocate
The top scorers are listed below, in order. If you’re considering a move, these may be the best places to relocate your real estate career:
- Denver/Aurora/Lakewood, Colorado (median salary: $63,300)
- Boulder, Colorado (median salary: $48,210)
- Sacramento/Roseville/Arden/Arcade, California (median salary: $59,040)
- Redding, California (median salary: $69,140)
- Houston/The Woodlands/Sugar Land, Texas (median salary: $56,390)
- Durham/Chapel Hill, North Carolina (median salary: $56,910)
- Cedar Rapids, Iowa (median salary: $56,060)
- Reno, Nevada (median salary: $52,250)
- San Francisco/Oakland/Hayward, California (median salary: $53,200)
- San Jose/Sunnyvale/Santa Clara, California (median salary: $54,790)
However, Carrie Wiley, director of public relations at Goodcall, emphasizes that an agent should consider the “intangibles,” as well as the hard numbers, when considering a relocation to a promising real estate market.
“With talent and hard work, and by knowing the market conditions, an agent can probably build a successful career in most markets,” she says, “and few agents will want to just pick up and move cross-country to a market that looks promising. But I would advise agents who are considering where to build their careers to look at this study and determine which markets might be in the top 10 or 15 for them, considering where they live now and how they see their careers evolving.”
Wiley says Goodcall publishes similar reports on various professions within the U.S. Compensation data comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and includes salaries, commissions, and other fees. Compensation gets the highest weight (25%) of all the factors that determine Goodcall’s most attractive markets.
“But that’s not the whole picture,” she adds. “Most of the top markets had an average compensation of well over $50,000. Boulder, which scored second overall, reports an average compensation of $48,000, but it’s so much stronger in several other metrics. Different factors will come into play, to determine how successful an agent might be in a certain market.”
The study shows that every region of the U.S. has a few markets that look especially promising. Agents considering a relocation should consider not only the statistics, but the lifestyle of the area as it relates to their personal priorities. Here are some questions an agent might ask, about what they want out of a community in addition to career opportunities:
- Am I planning to raise a family there?
- Are cultural activities (education, the performing arts) a priority for me?
- Do I want to live near a strong sports team?
- Do I want to live near other family members?
- Do I prefer an urban or suburban environment?
- Will my family and I be a good fit for that demographic?
Ready to relocate your real estate career?
Before choosing among the best places to relocate, be sure to consult with each state’s real estate board to learn about real estate licensing in that state and find out if you qualify for any real estate reciprocity licensing.
Interested in beginning a career in real estate? Learn how to become a real estate agent in the quick video below.