These Are the 10 Cities Where Mortgage Payments Rose the Most This Year

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  • It's been a hard year to be an aspiring homeowner.
  • These 10 cities (all in the South or Southwest) had the largest increases in entry-level mortgage payments between July 2021 and July 2022.
  • If you want to buy in the current climate, focus on saving a down payment and paying off debt so you can get the best mortgage rate available.

Here's the impact of the unprecedented housing market.

To say that the housing market has been challenging as of late would be a massive understatement. Wannabe home buyers have contended with bidding wars, a low housing inventory, and now rising mortgage rates. As of this writing, the current average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 6.66%, up from January 2021's average rate of 2.65%, the lowest 30-year fixed mortgage interest rate of all time. And if buyers did manage to get on the property ladder, they likely paid more than they would have wanted to for a home -- meaning some buyers got shut out completely.

Here are the 10 cities where the current entry-level mortgage payment rose the most (due to a combination of home prices and mortgage rates) between July 2021 and July 2022, per data from John Burns Real Estate Consulting. All of these cities are located in the Southwestern and Southern United States, both very popular areas that are drawing a lot of Americans. North American Moving Services' 2021 Migration Report found that Arizona, Tennessee, and the Carolinas were the top destinations for Americans who moved in 2021, which you'll see reflected in this list. So, what are the average home values in these metro areas, and what features drew buyers to them? Let's dive in.

1. Orlando, Florida

Average home value: $389,144 (up 28.2% over previous year)

Orlando is the first of four Florida cities on this list, and it has a special pull for a lot of Americans because of its warm weather and many family-friendly attractions. Disney World opened in 1971, and that was just the beginning; now the company has 40 square miles devoted to four theme parks and two water parks in the Orlando area.

2. Nashville, Tennessee

Average home value: $462,211 (up 27.9% over previous year)

Nashville is the capital of Tennessee and its second-largest city. It's well known for being the home of the country music scene, and also features an NFL team and a few well-rated institutions of higher learning.

3. Raleigh, North Carolina

Average home value: $457,510 (up 25.2% over previous year)

The first of two North Carolina cities on the list, Raleigh is located in the middle of the state. Residents can enjoy college sports and plentiful jobs with high-technology companies. It's also far enough south to offer milder winters.

4. Jacksonville, Florida

Average home value: $313,315 (up 27.1% over previous year)

Jacksonville is on Florida's northern Atlantic coast, very close to Georgia; according to moving company PODS, residents often say that it feels more like the Peach State than the Sunshine State. Jacksonville gives residents easy beach access and hot summers.

5. Charlotte, North Carolina

Average home value: $402,643 (up 23.5% over previous year)

Charlotte is very close to the South Carolina border, and is home to the NASCAR Hall of Fame, drawing race fans from all over. It's the most populous city in the state, and also has one of the world's busiest airports, which is a major hub for American Airlines.

6. Las Vegas, Nevada

Average home value: $442,727 (up 22.4% over previous year)

Las Vegas is synonymous with bright lights, gambling, and the tourism industry, and bills itself the Entertainment Capital of the World. It offers residents a dry desert climate, year-round sun, and the chance to pay no state income taxes.

7. Miami, Florida

Average home value: $560,169 (up 30.7% over previous year)

Miami may be vulnerable to hurricanes, but fun in the sun and beautiful beaches are a powerful attraction for those who move to this south Atlantic coast city. Miami boasts cultural diversity, vibrant nightlife, and plenty to see and do for both residents and tourists alike.

8. Tampa, Florida

Average home value: $422,079 (up 28.2% over previous year)

The final Florida city on this list, Tampa is located in the central Gulf Coast part of the state. Tampa boasts a few major league sports teams, warm weather, and proximity to both the ocean and Tampa Bay.

9. Atlanta, Georgia

Average home value: $403,646 (up 15.5% over previous year)

Atlanta sits in central Georgia, and unlike some Southern cities on this list, sees all four seasons (granted, winter comes without too much snowy weather). Big attractions include ample green spaces for golf and other recreation and multiple pro sports teams.

10. Phoenix, Arizona

Average home value: $427,586 (up 16.5% over previous year)

If you like hot, dry weather and a lot of sunshine, Phoenix might be a fit for you. This desert city's population has grown by leaps and bounds; the 2020 U.S. Census found that Phoenix gained in population more than any other city.

Want to buy a house?

It's still a difficult time for aspiring home buyers, but the market is gradually cooling off, thanks to higher mortgage rates. Redfin notes that buyers have lost 29% of their buying power thanks to the spike. This is discouraging, but there are a few steps you can take to be ready to buy a home when the right one comes along.

  • Work on getting your credit score up, to qualify for the best available mortgage rates when you apply.
  • Pay off debt to put yourself in the best position to afford a home.
  • Save a down payment, ideally of at least 20% so you can avoid having to pay for private mortgage insurance.
  • Don't give up hope. No one can predict the direction of the housing market, but we may see lower rates in 2023. And if you get stuck with a higher rate now, you can refinance when things cool off.

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