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Homes.com “State of the Rental Market” Q2 Report Reveals Top Ten Cities Searched by Renters

Renters look for cities with improving employment prospects

NORFOLK, Va. (August 1, 2012)
Home renters across the nation are turning to the ease and convenience of the Internet to find homes. Homes.com, a leading real estate listing site and lifestyle resource for all things home related, has analyzed rental data and search trends in its newly released quarterly “State of the Rental Market” report. The data, compiled from consumers searching Homes.com and ForRent.com, reveals more than 31 million searches for rental properties – an increase of 20 percent from Q1.

The report, an industry standard for obtaining a pulse on the rental market, indicates many renters are looking in the same cities that homebuyers favor. The majority of rental searches are in Southern cities currently experiencing a rise in employment and an improving economy.

The top ten cities are ranked by the total number of unique searches by consumers on Homes.com and ForRent.com.  In addition to ranking the cities by total searches, percentage change from Q1 to Q2 for each area is also noted for each city.

Top ten cities searched by renters on Homes.com and ForRent.com:

  1. Houston  (up 31.44%)
  2. San Antonio  (up 11.26%)
  3. Atlanta   (up 42.78%)
  4. Orlando   (up 33.32)
  5. Chicago    (up 38.51%)
  6. Las Vegas  (up 18.41%)
  7. Phoenix   (up 55.85%)
  8. Austin   (up 28.16%)
  9. Charlotte   (up 41.96%)
  10. Miami    (up 35.06%)

The data shows that Southern housing markets are leading the way in home rental searches, with seven out of the ten cities located in the South. Houston and San Antonio top the list, due in part to Texas’ low cost of living and the absence of state income tax. Rounding off the top five are Atlanta, Orlando and Chicago. All three cities are considered great places for young, recent graduates, the most common demographic in renters. Although Phoenix came in seventh on the list, the city saw a more than 55 percent increase in home searches  – the largest jump on the top ten list.

According to a recent report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Houston’s job market is growing faster than any other metro area, jumpstarting its housing market. Renters find not only Southern charm, but job openings and plenty of available real estate. Houston is home to 23 Fortune 500 company headquarters and has a booming technology industry.

Behind Houston is San Antonio, home of the Alamo. San Antonio is the third-fastest growing city in the country and is considered the most affordable city in America for residents and visitors. It also has the first bike share program in Texas and is well known as a safe “walking” city.

The report, complete with more than 100 cities and neighborhoods searched throughout the country, is an indicator that the rental market continues to be strong even as home purchases are on the rise.

The chart below shows the top 100 cities searched throughout the country. The increase in searches from Q1 to Q2 is an indicator that the rental market continues to be strong even as home purchases are on the rise.

Click on the image to see a larger version.

About Homes.com
As one of the nation’s top online real estate destinations, Homes.com inspires consumers to dream big. From affordable houses to luxurious estates, condos and more, Homes.com features more than four million property listings and a user-friendly format, making finding your next home or a licensed real estate agent easy. Visitors to the Homes.com blog will find a collection of rich content and posts on DIY projects, painting, gardening and more, providing the ultimate resource for everything home related. From purchasing a first home, to upgrading, downsizing and everything in between, Homes.com is an inspiring and engaging partner in every phase of the home buying process. For more information, visit www.homes.com or blog.homes.com.

About For Rent Media Solutions™
Founded in 1982 as For Rent Magazine®, For Rent Media Solutions™ is headquartered in Norfolk, Va., and provides multifamily housing solutions for apartment seekers and property/apartment managers and owners through integrated marketing techniques, including print and Internet, mobile media, custom video and social media solutions.  For Rent Media Solutions operates For Rent Magazine, as well as Apartamentos Para Rentar®, and publishes 94 magazines covering more than 190 markets nationwide, including After 55™ Housing & Resource Guide, and ForRent.com™-The Magazine. For Rent Media Solutions operates four additional websites: ForRent.com®, SeniorOutlook.com®, CorporateHousing.com® and ParaRentar.com®. Visit ForRent.com for more information, or visit us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn.

Homes.com and For Rent Media Solutions are divisions of Dominion Enterprises, a leading marketing services and publishing company headquartered in Norfolk, Virginia. For more information, visit www.dominionenterprises.com.