The 10 Best States for Homeowners

Happy couple moving into their first home and celebrating being new homeowners
fizkes / Shutterstock.com

This story originally appeared on SmartAsset.

With mortgage rates falling and a renewed emphasis put on living space during the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. home sales have boomed.

Data from the National Association of Realtors shows that sales of previously owned homes increased by 20.7% over the month of June and rose an additional 24.7% during July. Meanwhile, based on the U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Construction, sales of new homes increased by 15.1% and 13.8% during June and July, respectively.

To find the best states for homeowners, we compared data for all 50 states across a total of 10 metrics. Six of those metrics, shown below, were given a full weight:

  • Median price per square foot. Data comes from Zillow and is for January 2020.
  • Home value appreciation. This is the percentage change in the median price per square foot from January 2019 to January 2020. Data comes from Zillow.
  • Ratio of home value to income. This is the median home value divided by the median household income. Data comes from the Census Bureau’s 2018 one-year American Community Survey.
  • Foreclosures per 10,000 homes. Data comes from realtytrac.com and is for July 2020.
  • Average annual homeowners insurance. Data comes from ValuePenguin and is for June 2020.
  • Burglary rate. This is the number of burglaries per 100,000 residents. Data comes from the FBI and is for 2018.

We half-weighted the remaining four metrics:

  • Median annual property taxes. Data comes from the Census Bureau’s 2018 one-year American Community Survey.
  • Effective property tax rate. This is the median annual property taxes paid divided by the median home value. Data for both components comes from the Census Bureau’s 2018 one-year American Community Survey.
  • Average closing costs. Data comes from SmartAsset’s closing costs calculator.
  • Average closing costs as a percentage of median home value. This is average closing costs divided by the median home value. Data comes from SmartAsset’s closing costs calculator and the Census Bureau’s 2018 one-year American Community Survey.

We ranked each state on every metric, and using the weightings described above, we found each state’s average ranking. From there, we created our final score. The state with the best average ranking received a score of 100 while the state with the worst average ranking received a score of zero.

Following are the best states for homeowners.

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