Asheville has traditionally been thought of as the place to be in Western North Carolina. However, don’t be surprised if real estate in Fletcher becomes the hot topic soon. As the Asheville Citizen Times reports, Asheville’s population growth is dropping, while the surrounding towns are taking off.
For people looking for homes sale in Western North Carolina, that’s good news—it’s even better news if you’re selling a home in Henderson, Haywood, or Buncombe county.
Asheville’s Population Growth is Slowing
After averaging a population growth of 1.5% annually over six years, population growth in Asheville slowed to 0.7% annually in 2017 and 2018. Asheville currently has a population of 92,500 and is still adding about 650 people per year, so the city won’t be relegated to “small town” status anytime soon. However, this growth rate drop is noticeable when compared to other cities in Western North Carolina.
Asheville consistently placed in the top six fastest growing cities in the area between 2011 and 2016. The city took a steep drop in 2017 and 2018, ranking 17thand 13th, respectively. So, which cities pushed Asheville out of the top ten?
The Fastest Growing Cities Near Asheville
Almost all of Asheville’s neighboring cities have seen impressive population growth in recent years. In 2018 Weaverville, also located in Buncombe County, saw a growth rate of 1.6%. That same year saw a 1.7% growth rate in Maggie Valley, 1.4% in Waynesville, and 1.2% in both Mills River and Fletcher.
All of these cities are just a quick jaunt from downtown Asheville, and all of them are charming in their own right, so it’s no surprise people are flocking to them as Western North Carolina becomes one of the most popular regions in the state.
Why Mountain Towns are Growing
If you’ve been looking at home prices in Asheville, it shouldn’t come as a shock to hear they’re some of the highest in the area. Asheville is well-known for its music scene, art, restaurants, and breweries, so it’s often the first place newcomers look. The lifestyle is appealing, but the price tag scares off many prospective buyers—especially millennials and young families.
Real estate in Fletcher, Weaverville, Hendersonville, and beyond, however, is a tremendous value. You typically get much more bang for your buck when you travel just 15 or 20 minutes outside Asheville city limits. Average sale prices in Asheville are north of $360,000, while sale prices are under $300,000 in Hendersonville and Haywood County. For that price you’re likely getting more bedrooms and more property, too.
Things to Do in WNC Mountain Towns
Sheer economics aren’t the only factor, though. The mountain towns near Asheville all have their own unique charm as well, whether it’s a historic downtown or a new brewery started by a young entrepreneur. You don’t have to look far to find something fun to do on any night of the week in Hendersonville or delicious food in Canton.
It’s also worth mentioning that being further from Downtown Asheville also typically puts you closer to all of those beautiful hikes, climbing routes, and waterfalls that draw people to the region in the first place. If you’re an outdoorsy type, living outside the city will save you some serious gas money. You’ll also probably have a lot more space to start your own garden.
The Buyers are Coming! The Buyers are Coming!
All of this is great news if you own real estate in Fletcher, Lake James, Hendersonville, or Arden, of course. If you’ve been sitting on your home for a few years looking for the right market to list, now is probably your time. A rapidly growing population means a big demand for homes, and it doesn’t look like it’ll slow down anytime soon.
The situation is a rare win-win for buyers, too: you’re more than likely on the early end of the boom and there are plenty of untapped markets out there. If you’re looking for a couple acres if property away from the hustle and bustle or a new development, you have plenty of options. If growth rates hold, many of these small-town buys will turn out to be shrewd investments in a growing area.
Work with the Best Realtors in North Carolina
Whether you’re buying or selling, Keller Williams Asheville has the perfect realtor for your needs. Our experts know the market backwards and forwards and can point you to all of the promising little sleepy towns about to wake up. Every one of our agents lives in and loves the Western North Carolina region and we’re looking forward to calling you our neighbor.
If you’re looking for a home in Weaverville, Hendersonville, Fletcher, or beyond, why not start looking today on our online real estate database? Each city also has its own Community page where you’ll find more information on average home prices. Simply pick the area you’re interested in under the “Communities” tab at the top of the page.
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