Today’s Headlines Say St. Louis Is “Among worst cities for buying a house” – True or not?

Not that anyone that reads my articles on a regular basis needs any more proof of this, but there was yet another example today of just how “local” real estate is, and why it is so important to make sure you have good, accurate, up to date information before making real estate decisions.  Today, the St Louis Business Journal published an article titled “St Louis among worst cities for buying a home” in which they cited a report from WalletHub that put St Louis at number 55 of 63 large cities on their list of best cities to buy a home in.  The problem isn’t the ranking, as based upon the criteria used, it may very well be accurate, the problem is it really doesn’t paint a true picture of the real estate market in the St Louis area.

St Louis isn’t the “St Louis” most people are referring to…

The report was based upon data from the city of St Louis which I think most everyone knows has been on the decline population-wise for a long time now and has more challenges with the unemployment rate, median income, average credit scores as well as some of the other areas used in the report to rank the city.  However, when locals, as well as many outsiders, talk about “St Louis” they are really referring to the whole, St Louis City and County area, not just the city.

Given that the city of St Louis has a population of just 311,404 people, and that is less than a quarter (23.7%) of the overall St Louis City and County combined population of 1,314,404 people, the St Louis portion of our real estate market is a very small, not so significant part of the market.  Contrast this with Kansas City, Missouri where the city has 70% of the population of the county it is located in.  Therefore, when Kansas City is ranked based upon the city of Kansas City’s real estate market, it is a much truer representation of the overall market there.




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