Cape Cod town named one of the best for first-time homebuyers

by Liz Hughes

A new report found that despite cities in New England having higher housing costs, one Cape Cod community is breaking the stereotype. 

Barnstable, Massachusetts, has made the top 10 in ConsumerAffairs Research Team’s ranking of Best Cities for First-Time Homebuyers.

Barnstable came in N0. 8 on the list due to its low unemployment rate and housing prices. 

First-time homebuyers made up only 32% of purchases from July 2022 to June 2023, a “sign of the many barriers facing this segment of buyers,” according to the report.

“This is the least-affordable housing market facing first-time buyers since the early 1980s,” said Susan M. Wachter, a professor of real estate at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Clare Trapasso, the executive news editor at Realtor.com, said, “There’s no need to sugarcoat it — it’s pretty bad out there — especially for first-time buyers.”

ConsumerAffairs compared metros across nine financial and quality-of-life factors, giving each a financial friendliness score (how expensive it is to buy a home from mortgage rates to home prices and property taxes) and a quality-of-life score that looks at crime rates, unemployment, climate and racial diversity. 

The Raleigh-Cary, North Carolina, area topped the list overall followed by Provo-Orem, Utah, and Naples-Marco Island, Florida. Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, California, and Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Florida, rounded out the top five.

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