Recent studies by Zillow and Million Acres (a Motley Fool company) have determined that homes are selling more quickly than they were at this time last year, and that more people are considering leaving big cities to move to smaller towns. 

While both buyers and sellers took a “wait and see” approach when the pandemic hit, the market is now ramping up. People have been reassured to see that real estate agents are taking innovative approaches to keep them safe, and this, in addition to mortgage rates being at a record low and the prices of homes holding steady since May, has contributed to homes flying off the market — homes sold in the second week of June 2020 stayed on the market for only about 22 days, the fastest they’ve sold since June 2018.

But the best news for our region is that more people are looking into leaving bigger cities and moving to smaller towns due to the pandemic. A recent Harris poll found that nearly 40% of people living in cities such as New York, Miami, and Atlanta, are considering saying goodbye to city life. Three in 10 Americans say the pandemic makes them want to live in a rural area; 1 in 4 want to live in a suburb of a major city.

And it appears that housing markets in smaller towns will come out of the pandemic in better shape than larger cities. Says Tom Ellis, a senior data journalist at Redfin, "Based on what we're seeing in the data so far, it looks like the housing market in rural areas and small towns will weather the storm through coronavirus shutdowns better than the big cities. We may also see an increase in home sales in these less densely populated areas in the long term as well, as homebuyers look to get away from the cities or just purchase a second home that they can retreat to when times in the city get rough."