America’s 10 Richest Counties

America's Richest CountiesThere are 3,033 counties in the United States. Which 10 are the richest in terms of median household income? Not surprisingly, those near major economic centers rank high.

In a study based on household income estimates from the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, Loudoun County, Virginia captures the number one spot in America’s Richest Counties.

Loudoun County is a Washington, D.C. suburb and is home to Dulles International Airport, as well as a well-educated workforce.

The complete Top 10 list of America’s Richest Counties :

  1. Loudoun County, Virginia ($115,574)
  2. Falls Church City, Virginia ($114,409)
  3. Fairfax County, Virginia ($105,416)
  4. Los Alamos County, New Mexico ($103,643)
  5. Howard County, Maryland ($103,273)
  6. Hunterdon County, New Jersey ($100,980)
  7. Douglas County, Colorado ($99,198)
  8. Fairfax City, Virginia ($97,900)
  9. Somerset County, New Jersey ($97,440)
  10. Morris County, New Jersey ($96,747)

As a region, it’s estimated that 40% of the Washington, D.C. metro area economy can be attributed to federal spending. This helps explain why Falls Church City, Virginia; Fairfax County, Virginia; and Howard County, Maryland all scored high on the list. It’s also why Los Alamos ranked 4 — the largest employer in Los Alamos is the Los Alamos National Laboratory, one of the largest science and technology institutes in the world.

The New Jersey counties are popular commuter areas for homeowners who work in New York City.

As a home buyer in Allen , the wealth of particular area may matter to you, but it won’t be the sole reason you purchase. You may have interest in a quality school district, or a vibrant nightlife, or a a high walkability factor, for example.

For more detailed statistics about the 10 counties at top or other local markets, be sure to ask your real estate agent.

The Top 10 Cities In Which To Raise A Family

Great places to raise a familyLooking for a great place to raise a family? Forbes Magazine has a list that may help you.

Titled “The Best Cities For Raising A Family“, Forbes has compiled and analyzed data from America’s 100 largest metropolitan areas, accounting for seven lifestyle factors including cost of living, commuting ease, school quality, crime density, and home affordability.

Given these selection criteria, it’s no surprise that Grand Rapids, Michigan took top honors. The area’s low median income is offset by an extremely low cost of living and a school system that’s among the best in the nation. Nearly 90% of the homes in Grand Rapids are affordable families earning the median income — the seventh-highest affordability ranking in the country — and commutes are quick.

Since the housing peak, home prices are down just 12% in Grand Rapids — a figure below the national average.

The complete Top 10 list for the Forbes “The Best Cities For Raising A Family” piece were:

  1. Grand Rapids, Michigan
  2. Boise, Idaho
  3. Provo, Utah
  4. Youngstown, Ohio
  5. Raleigh, North Carolina
  6. Poughkeepsie, New York
  7. Omaha, Nebraska
  8. Ogden, Utah
  9. Cincinnati, Ohio
  10. Worcester, Massachusetts

Now, before you make a home-buying decision based on the Forbes report, remember that real estate is a local market and even city-wide statistics can be too broad to be helpful to everyday home buyers in Frisco. Even within Grand Rapids, there are some neighborhoods that outperform in terms of home valuations and school quality, for example; and some areas from which a daily work commute may be more cumbersome.

For accurate, real-time housing data for any of the above markets , be sure to ask a real estate professional.

Plano TX Ranked #1 in America’s 10 Safest Cities

Plano TX, in the heart of Collin County, is ranked #1 among America’s Safest Cities by Forbes Magazine. We always knew that Plano was a great place to live and raise a family – now Forbes confirms it.

Plano TX #1 of safest cities in US

Looking for safe cities in which to live? A recent study may help you.

Titled “America’s Safest Cities“, Forbes Magazine compiled data from more than 70 cities with populations of 250,000 or more, and ranked them by violent crime rate as reported by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

A “violent crime” is one that can be categorized as murder, robbery, and assault, among others. Then, for each metropolis, local traffic-fatality rates were added to the area’s violent crime rate, and averaged into the data.

Forbes presents the 10 safest large cities in America as :

  1. Plano, Texas
  2. Henderson, Nevada
  3. Honolulu, Hawaii
  4. Santa Ana, California
  5. Lincoln, Nebraska
  6. San Jose, California
  7. Mesa. Arizona
  8. Colorado Springs, Colorado
  9. Aurora, Colorado
  10. New York, New York

Forbes is quick to note that “gridlocked” traffic patterns help keep cities safe; which may explain why cities like Honolulu and New York City made the Top 10. When cars are forced to move more slowly, the report states, traffic-related fatalities tend to plummet.

Don’t rush to make a home-buying decision based on Forbes data alone, however. Like everything else in real estate, data is local and city-wide statistics are too broad to be helpful to an everyday buyer.

North Point RealtyFor accurate, real-time, local crime data, call me to connect with a real estate professional to help you evaluate Plano, and other North Central Texas cities
Norma Wall, Broker 214-212-6770 – start your Home Search here.

Plano is home to 261,000 people and has long been recognized as a family-friendly community. High-ranking schools, excellent parks and recreation areas, outstanding employment and city planning, give Plano bragging rights as one of the premier North Texas cities. For more information and lifestyle profile, review our Focus on Plano.

No Texas ZIP Codes in “Most Expensive ZIP” List

Most Expensive ZIP Codes

No surprise here. There are no Texas ZIP codes included in the list of “Most Expensive ZIP Codes in the Country”.

I think this is good news because Texas can offer a more affordable lifestyle, especially to anyone who is planning to relocate from California or New York.

In the housing market, amenities and location have as much to do with a home’s value as the everyday forces of supply-and-demand. Whereas the latter causes home values to rise and fall over time, the former creates a starting point for said values.

Where you live — and the features of your home — determine your home’s price range. Naturally, homes in some areas are consistently higher-valued than homes in others.

Using data compiled by real estate market data firm Altos Research, Forbes Magazine presents America’s 10 most expensive ZIP codes. California and the New York Metro area dominate the list.

  1. Alpine, NJ (07620) : $4,550,000
  2. Atherton, CA (94027) : $4,295,000
  3. Sagaponack, NY (11962) : $3.595,000
  4. Hillsborough, CA (94010) : $3,499,000
  5. Beverly Hills, CA (90210) : $3,469,891
  6. New York, NY (10012) : $3,392,574
  7. New York, NY (10013) : $3,317,962
  8. Water Mill, NY (11976) : $3,300,000
  9. Montecito, CA (93108) : $3,099,348
  10. Old Westbury, NY (11568) : $3,095,000

In fact, of the top 50 most expensive ZIP codes, only 6 are located outside of California and New York regions. 3 are Colorado resort towns — Snowmass (81654), Aspen (81611) and Telluride (81435) — one is in Maryland, one is in Florida, and the last is in Washington State.

Chicago-suburb Kenilworth (60043) is the top-ranked Midwest ZIP code. It placed 86th overall.

The Forbes list may be interesting but, to home buyers or sellers , it should not be the final word in home values. Real estate is a local market which means that — even within a given ZIP code — prices can vary based on street and neighborhood.

Look past general data and get specific. Talk to your real estate agent for local market pricing.

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