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West Hartford Ranks in Top 5 Among Zillow ‘Surfers’

Real estate sign in West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Zillow just completed a review of its top searched markets for the past year, and West Hartford is No. 5 in the U.S.

By Ronni Newton

The Town of West Hartford has been recognized dozens of times in recent years on “best of” lists by organizations and publications such as Money Magazine, Livability.com, and Niche.com, but in many cases those rankings have some subjectivity.

“We should never take something like that for granted,” Town Manager Rick Ledwith said Wednesday speaking to town staff at an employee recognition luncheon, noting that town employees play a major role in making West Hartford a great place to live.

This week, in a data-based report, West Hartford was listed the No. 5 searched market by Zillow in its ranking of “surfers” – not the kind that ride the waves, but the kind that search online for their next place to live.

According to Zillow, their analysis looked at “housing metrics that indicate consumer demand – including page-view traffic, home value growth and days on market — for nearly 2,300 U.S. cities.”

The Northeast dominated the top markets this year, Zillow said. West Chester, Pennsylvania was the No. 1 market, and the top five were rounded out by Nashua, NH; Manchester, NH; Wethersfield, CT; and West Hartford. Connecticut had several other towns in the top 10, including Middletown as No.7 and Newington as No. 9. Among the top 10, only Manchester, NH, has a population of more than 100,000.

Zillow said this in part about West Chester, which is located outside Philadelphia and has a population of roughly 20,000: “Strong interest among home shoppers on Zillow has helped push West Chester home values about 8% higher over the past year. The typical home in West Chester is worth about $584,000, putting it among the more expensive cities in Pennsylvania. But given its relative affordability compared to larger markets nearby, such as New York City and Washington, D.C., those looking for a break from city life may see West Chester as an attractive and affordable place to call home. … West Chester ranked within the top 100 cities in Zillow page views per listing in Zillow’s rankings, far outperforming its size. Almost two-thirds of those views came from outside the city, possibly signaling interest in moving there.”

While the data is not specific to West Hartford, the Greater Hartford Association of Realtors reported this week that the median sales price of single-family homes in the Greater Hartford area increased 8.6%.

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