Pittsburgh’s Housing Market

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I didn't know Pittsburgh's housing market was so stable. Interesting on the affordable housing aspect.


Many of you know that I’m saving to buy a home. Well, kind of. It’s a long-term goal, but debt payoff is a priority at this very moment.

While I’m disappointed that progress is slow, I’m not all out freaking out. That’s because Pittsburgh is one of the most stable housing market in the country. Home prices are going up while I’m still renting, but they’re not going up astronomically. I have faith that I’ll be able to catch up.

And, hey, if this new tax bill passes both houses, there’s the real possibility that all the housing markets will be thrown into disarray. Maybe I’ll be able to snag a deal.

Kidding. I’d rather have a stable housing market.

Today I want to share with you some other fun facts about our local housing market–whether you’re looking to move here or just nerdily into personal finance.

We were okay during the Recession.

Remember when I told you that Pittsburgh has the most stable housing market in the country? That stability helped us weather the Recession better than a lot of other places.

I say this noting that if tragedy befell you, regional statistics don’t matter. I had people close to me lose a lot of money because of the crash–money that was directly tied to real estate. But in general, the region fared better than other places.

A major part of that is the fact that we’re not a boom city. People still judge us based on our past, skipping the city over for sexier alternatives.

Sometimes I take offense to that. But our housing market doesn’t. In fact, it hopes you’ll keep us a secret so it can go on quietly growing at a snail’s slow, but steady, pace.

We still have an affordable housing problem.

Rent has gone up since I moved into this place the better part of a decade ago. It’s part of the reason I’ve kept my family put; rent may have gone up, but because we’ve been here so long, we’re still paying less than the rates we’d find on the market.

I’m lucky enough that I can afford relatively healthy housing at this point in my life–even with the price increases.

Many people in my city can’t. As we slowly grow, we progressively gentrify. Our mayor was working on some innovative affordable housing solutions with the Obama administration, but since the turnover in the executive branch, that progress has come to a screeching halt.

Yet our housing is affordable.

If you’re coming from another city, you’ll be overjoyed when you check out the Pittsburgh rental market. We’ve got a relatively low cost of living, and housing is a major factor in that.

However, you have to keep in mind that while our housing is affordable compared to other metro areas, employers are generally aware of that fact. And they’ll pay you accordingly. Moving to Pittsburgh is unlikely to help you pocket the rest of a fat paycheck unless you’re holding onto remote work that factors in another area’s cost of living.


What is the housing market like in your city?



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7 thoughts on “Pittsburgh’s Housing Market

  1. Lizzy

    Thank you for this post. I have been considering a move to Pittsburgh for some time now, mainly because it is affordable for an urban area.

    1. femmefrugality Post author

      It really is. I love living here. I tried to leave, but ended up coming back–and I don’t plan on leaving anytime soon. Property taxes in Allegheny county are something to look at, though. (Keeping in mind that they vary from municipality to municipality.)

      Here’s a welcome guide for people thinking about moving, too. If you want more info, I’ve got tons of it! Haha. Just shoot me an email. 🙂


  2. Chonce

    My husband and I are saving for a house too, and woah our markets are a little crazy here. It’s nice to know how stable Pittsburgh is, because that’s fairly rare in urban cities! Especially lately.

    1. femmefrugality Post author

      I do not envy you the Chicago market! We’re extremely lucky in that respect. It will be interesting to see what happens as we start hosting more tech companies. Hopefully we continue the slow and steady growth, and hopefully we start finding a way to extend jobs to residents who already live here rather than only attracting migrants from other cities.

  3. Kayla

    Our housing market is pretty unique. We aren’t usually affected by the national changes in the market. I think it’s because we are also one of the last areas to usually be affected by all economic shifts.

  4. JoeHx

    The housing market in the main city where I live (Dayton) has improved, but the housing crash resulted in a lot of foreclosed houses that went on to never be taken care of – and a lot of them were stripped of any metal pipes and copper pipes for scrap. I inherited a house right before the crash, so the dropped prices helped me in that it lowered my property taxes. I just sold it earlier this year and got more than I expected.


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