Fact checked

The fastest- and slowest-selling housing markets in Q1 2024

Fastest-slowest metro areas 2
Media inquiries: [email protected]

2023 was America’s worst year for home sales in nearly three decades, and the start of 2024 isn’t faring much better.

Faced with chronically low housing stock, elevated mortgage rates, and rising home prices, many buyers still sit on the sidelines, waiting for the market to break in their favor.

Unfortunately, with mortgage rates creeping higher again, the odds of that happening in the near term remain bleak.

As we head into the busier spring homebuying season, Creditnews Research ranked the fastest-selling housing markets in America within the top 100 most populous metropolitan areas.

This is the second issue of our best-selling metro rankings, with the first being an in-depth comparison between pre- and post-Covid housing market trends.

While there wasn’t much of a reshuffling in the top 10 rankings compared to Q4 2023, the housing market has cooled off across the board at the start of 2024.

In all 100 metros examined, listings have stayed on the market for the same number of days or longer compared to a quarter before.

Key findings
  • The top 10 fastest-selling metros of Q1 2024 are all located on the East Coast and Midwest—with Hartford, CT; Syracuse, NY; Harrisburg, PA; Rochester, NY; and Grand Rapids, MI coming out on top;
  • The top 10 slowest-selling metros are mainly located in Southern states—with homes in Austin, TX; McAllen, TX; Poughkeepsie, NY; San Antonio, TX; and New Orleans, LA staying on the market the longest;
  • Pittsburgh, PA, is the biggest Q1 “loser,” as the average home stayed on the market 83% longer than a quarter before. In terms of actual days an average home stays on the market, Des Moines, IA, saw the most significant increase at 14 days;
  • There were no “winners” in the first quarter of 2024 because all metro areas were selling at the same or slower pace compared to a quarter before;
  • The median days an average home stayed on the market increased in 95 metros and stayed the same in the remaining five (Hartford, CT; Syracuse, NY; Rochester, NY; Seattle, WA; and San Jose, CA).

Top 10 fastest-selling metros

Nine of the top 10 fastest-selling housing markets from Q4 2023 made it back on our list in the first quarter of 2024.

These metros have a lot in common: They’re all located on the East Coast and Midwest and have seen a sizable drop in housing inventory compared to the previous quarter.

The top 10 also includes two of the largest metros in the country—Boston and the National Capital Region.

  • Hartford, CT: Hartford is once again the fastest-selling housing market, with a median days-to-pending of seven days, virtually unchanged from the previous quarter. Housing inventory fell by 28% in the first quarter, which is the third-largest decline in the top 10;
  • Syracuse, NY: The Central New York city of Syracuse reclaimed its top-three position, with a median days-to-pending of eight days, also unchanged from the prior quarter. Syracuse’s housing inventory declined by 26% in the first quarter;
  • Harrisburg, PA: The only Pennsylvania metro in the top 10 has a median days-to-pending of eight days, up 14% from the previous quarter. However, Harrisburg’s housing inventory fell by 14%;
  • Rochester, NY: The average days on the market in Rochester was nine days, unchanged from the previous quarter. This Upstate New York city saw its housing inventory decline by 31% compared to a quarter before;
  • Grand Rapids, MI: The only Michigan city in the top 10, Grand Rapids’ median days-to-pending is 10 days—virtually unchanged from the previous quarter;
  • Richmond, VA: Richmond’s median days on the market was 10 days, a 25% increase from a previous quarter. Housing inventory in the metro area declined by a modest 10% over the same time;
  • Columbus, OH: Ohio’s second-largest metro also made it into the top 10 with a median days-to-pending of ten days, an increase of 25% from the previous quarter. Columbus’ housing inventory fell by 18%;
  • New Haven, CT: Also at 10 days, New Haven’s median days on the market is also up by 25% compared to a previous quarter;
  • Boston, MA: The eleventh-largest metro in the country ranks ninth on our list with a median days-to-pending of 11 days. That’s a 22% increase from the fourth quarter of 2023;
  • Washington, D.C.: The National Capital Region and seventh largest metro in the country cracks the top 10. Washington, D.C.’s median days-to-pending was 11 days in the first quarter, an increase of 10%;

Top 10 slowest-selling metros

Except for Poughkeepsie, NY, and Colorado Springs, CO, the top 10 slowest-selling metros are clustered mainly in the Southern states—with three located in Texas and four in Florida.

For the second straight quarter, the Texas metros of Austin and McAllen are the first and second-slowest-selling metros in the country, respectively.

In Austin, it takes 60 days for a home listing to reach sale-pending status—longer than any other metro in the country and 9% higher than a previous quarter. Austin’s housing inventory also dropped 16% quarter-over-quarter.

Homes in McAllen remained listed for a near average of 53 days, which is 13% higher compared to a previous quarter.

Meanwhile, Poughkeepsie, NY, is a close third with a median days-to-pending of 51 days, which is 31% higher compared to a quarter before.

Metros ranking between 4th and 7th have an average days to pending from 40 to 50: San Antonio, TX (49 days), New Orleans, LA (48 days), Fort Myers, FL (42 days), and Jacksonville, FL (41 days).

In each of these metros, listings have stayed much longer compared to a quarter before.

At the bottom of our worst-selling list are the Florida metros of Daytona Beach and Sarasota—with average days to pending of 39 and 38 days, respectively.

Among the top 10 slowest-selling metros, Sarasota homes saw the most considerable increase in median days on the market, at 44%. Interestingly, home inventory in this metro also soared by 30% last quarter.

This suggests a strong connection between housing inventories and the pace of home sales.

Colorado Springs, CO, rounded out the bottom 10, with a median days-to-pending of 37 days, a 42% increase from a previous quarter.

Biggest Q1 2024 winners and losers

No metro in the top 100 could call itself a “winner” last quarter.

Without exception, all metros in the study were selling at the same or slower pace in Q1 2024 compared to Q4 2023. However, some metros fared better than others.

For example, housing markets in Seattle, WA, San Jose, CA, Rochester, NY, and Syracuse, NY, had the same selling pace as the previous quarter, with median days-to-pending seeing a 0% change.

Meanwhile, Denver, CO, and Augusta, GA, witnessed a slight uptick (5%) in median days homes stayed on the market. The median days-to-pending increased by 6% in Madison, WI, and 9% in Boise, ID.

While Austin, TX, was the slowest-selling housing market in the country, the silver lining is that the metro’s median days-to-pending increased by only 9% quarter-over-quarter—the 10th-smallest increase.

Provided below is a list of metro areas that saw the highest month-over-month increase in days on the market during Q1 2024:

Strong correlation with housing inventory persists

The correlation between home sales and housing inventories remains apparent quarter-over-quarter.

Between Q4 2023 and Q1 2024, six of the top 10 slowest-selling metros were in areas that had the highest number of listings per 1,000 citizens.

Cape Coral, FL, ranked first in housing inventory (18.5 listings per 1,000 citizens) and was also the seventh-slowest-selling housing market in the country.

Sarasota, FL, ranked second in housing inventory (9 listings per 1,000 citizens) while coming in tenth as the slowest-selling housing market.

Daytona Beach, FL; Miami, FL; New Orleans, LA; and Jacksonville, FL, were the other four metros that shared top rankings in the highest housing inventories and slowest-selling housing markets.

On the flip side, metros with the fastest-selling housing markets also tend to rank lower for housing inventory.

For example, Rochester, NY; Grand Rapids, MI; and Hartford, CT, were in the top 10 fastest-selling markets while ranking among the metros with some of the lowest inventories in the nation.

  1. Zillow Housing Data (Median Days to Pending, For-Sale Inventory)