Not Suburban – Surban Growth Coming in 2017

  • December 15, 2016

Zillow’s predictions for the 2017 housing market include a growth in “surban” style communities.  Not to be confused with suburban-style sprawl, surban communities are the result of denser housing arrangements and urban amenities. 

Oak Park, IL, located in the surrounding Chicago area, is one example of a surban community complete with townhouses, apartments, and reliable public transportation.  Senior Consultant Danielle Leach from John Burns Real Estate Consulting in Chicago, explained, “Surban living is becoming a new way of life for many: where the blend of urban and suburban living provides the best of both worlds.” 

Surban communities provide urban amenities like walkability, public transportation, and proximity to grocery stores and entertainment without sacrificing the suburban elements like strong public schools and access to parks and youth programs that draw people away from city centers.  More homebuyers are seeking the urban convenience with the suburban perks, thus stimulating denser development of smaller homes close to public transit and urban centers.

In the report, prepared for Urban Land Institute’s Terwilliger Center for Housing by John Burns Real Estate Consulting, researchers suggest the following real estate trends to take place:

  • Surban developments will replace shopping centers citing an 86% increase in household formation to drive retail activity.
  • Suburban office demand will return as aging senior managers vacate urban cores to be closer to good schools for their children.
  • Southern suburban migration will continue, currently 42% of Americans live in the southern regions and this ratio is expected to grow by 62% over the next decade.
  • Rents will continue to rise it’s no secret that rents have been on the rise, especially as millennials delay homeownership and rental demand continues to surpass supply. 

The study concludes with a prediction of 80% residential growth in suburban areas over the next 10 years, compared to the 71% growth that took place from 2010 to 2015, and a more modest 15% growth for urban areas.  The shift toward surban design will only make suburban areas more accessible and inclusive to new residents.



Sources: MarketWatch, Inman, Urban Land


Cindy MacDonell
Senior Loan Officer
NMLS # 316198
Branch NMLS # 1270689

Cindy MacDonell

PHONE: (707) 781-8185

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