Despite more and more educated Millennials and empty-nester baby boomers moving into city centers, it looks like the typical homebuyer is moving away. For Washington, D.C. in particular, the "typical home" sold in 2015 was 6 percent farther from Downtown than one sold in 2011, according to new findings from national real estate brokerage Redfin.
On a national level, the "typical home" sold in 2015 was roughly 4 percent farther from a city center than one sold in 2011. This migration is most likely due to growing prices. Across 30 U.S. Metro areas analyzed, Redfin reported that prices skyrocketed almost 50 percent faster in the urban core than in the metro area as a whole.
For the District, the median price per square foot for a home in Downtown was $511, but for the Metro area, it was $187.
To compile their data, Redfin analyzed over 6 million home sales after determining the city center through local knowledge. After calculating the distance of every listing sold in each area's city center, the brokerage calculated the median distance for each metro every year and viewed the percentage change each year. Finally, to find the changes in price, Redfin used the median sale price per square foot.