Phoenix is projected as the top housing market in the country for next year, according to a new forecast report by Realtor.com.
The real estate group expects Phoenix housing to see price gains of 5.9 percent and sales growth of 7.2 percent. That earns the Valley the top spot.
Los Angeles ranks second, Boston third. Sacramento and Riverside round out the top five. Tucson is picked as the ninth strongest housing market next year, by Realtor.com’s forecasters.
The housing forecast projects slower but moderate growth in 2017 with eyes on a potential interest rate hike.
Realtor.com is an arm of media giant News Corp.
Nationally, the forecast calls for a 3.9 percent gain in home prices. That is slower than the past couple of years.
New home sales are estimated to increase 10 percent and new home starts 3 percent next year.
The real estate forecast expects 2.1 percent economic growth in the U.S. in 2017.
“We don’t expect the outcome of the election to have a direct impact on the health of the housing market or economy as we close out 2016. However, the 40 basis points increase in rates in the days following the election has caused us to increase our interest rate prediction for next year,” said Jonathan Smoke, chief economist for Realtor.com referring in part to Donald Trump’s presidential election.
The real estate group also expects Midwestern cities such as Madison, Wisconsin; Columbus, Ohio; Omaha, Nebraska; Des Moines, Iowa; and Minneapolis to be attractive to younger home buyers.
Those markets have affordable prices — compared to larger, mostly coastal cities — and are often college towns or have positive job markets.
Realtor.com projects Chicago with the weakest housing market in 2017 among the 100 top U.S. metros.