Best Cities for First Time Home Buyers

Buying your first home is both exciting and intimidating. For most people, it is their first significant purchase, and it is one that will engage you for years, if not decades, to come. Of course, you want to find the perfect property that will fit your family’s needs. However, where your first home will be located is even more critical.


As every new home buyer guide and home buying checklist will tell you, the value of real estate is all about location, location, and location. As a first-time homebuyer, you have likely more flexibility than you will have later in life. Your first home should be in a city that combines a good quality of life with an affordable cost of living and a dynamic real estate market. So, what are the best cities to live in that also offer excellent opportunities for new home buyers?


Tampa, Florida

With year-round sunshine, an affordable cost of living, and low real estate prices, Tampa FL was the best market for first time home buyers in 2019, according to a Zillow study. In fact, first time home buyers constituted 46 percent of all buyers in the area that year. On top of the affordable real estate prices, new home buyers in Tampa may be eligible for first-time buyers down payment assistance programs, such as DARE set up by Hillsborough County or other first-time home buyer loan grant programs. If you want to feel on vacation year-round without breaking the bank, an affordable new home in Tampa should be on your list of consideration.


Louisville, Kentucky

Louisville has everything to attract first time home buyers. Thanks to a low cost of living and real estate prices, you will get more bang for your buck for your first home than in most cities in the United States. In fact, according to the National Association of Home Builders’ Housing Opportunity Index, 80 percent of the Louisville’s new homes are affordable to median-income families. Besides, Louisville also benefits from advantageous programs for first time home buyers. Beyond the economic advantages, this vibrant metropolitan area has a high quality of life. It has made its name as a culinary destination and also offers high ratings in terms of business freedom and access to healthcare.


Raleigh, North Carolina

Raleigh, NC, is a city in full development. With a booming job market and one of the highest qualities of life in the United States, it still benefits from affordable real estate prices. No wonder the city consistently ranks up as one of the best cities to live in according to new home buyers' guides. Surrounded by natural beauty, high-quality education, and a world-class food and cultural scene, a new home in Raleigh may be the ideal choice for young families and professionals alike.


Columbus, Ohio

Like many of its Midwest neighbors, Columbus, Ohio, benefits from real estate prices well below the U.S. average. Besides, it is also one of the best cities to live in the area for young professionals and families. With more diversity than surrounding towns, a bustling art and culture scene, and a dynamic job market, Columbus has plenty to offer to first time home buyers. In addition, if you enjoy sports and college football, then a new home in Columbus is definitely the place for you!


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

The thriving art scene, beautiful architecture, and high Housing Opportunity Index – 82.9 percent - makes Pittsburgh one of the best cities where you should buy your first home. It is particularly attractive for those working in the tech sector, with Uber, Google, Facebook, and Duolingo all holding offices in the area. Besides, Pittsburgh benefits from enticing financing assistance programs for qualified first-time home buyers. All good reasons to make Steel City your next home!


Now that you have found your ideal location as a first-time home buyer, it is time to find your dream house. With new affordable homes located in some of the best cities for first time home buyers, Centex offers high-quality properties with flexible floor plans and smart technology to match your household's needs. Your first home may only be a click away!



Contributed to Your Home blog by Alix Barnaud

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Published 01.11.21

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