Million-dollar homes no longer pie in the sky | Jim Parker

Properties priced in the seven-figure range even 20 years ago were a rare exception in all but the swankiest communities of the United States. Nowadays, million-dollar homes are cropping up throughout the country, and the number of residences is surging with one in 25 houses nationwide valued at $1 million or above.

Housing researchers cite a tight market that’s driven up costs as contributing to the growth in luxury mansions, beachfront bastions, premier estates and secluded compounds. Still the list varies depending on the locale. “In Atlanta, it could indeed net you a gigantic mansion in the exclusive suburbs. But in San Francisco, a seven-figure check barely gets you a compact condo with one bathroom,” says Yuqing Pan in a June article on Realtor.com.

The real estate site this spring studied cities with the highest growth rates in homes priced at $1 million or higher from first quarter 2014 to first quarter of 2017, factoring out certain super rich markets such as Aspen, Colorado, and San Francisco — in which 1 in 10 homes reached the $1 million mark even three years ago. The list also limited top picks to two per state.

While most of the million-dollar places are in the West, they make up a cross-section of resort-like towns, mountain-ringed metros and historic oceanside cities.

Denver ranked first, with the Colorado city’s million-dollar home growth rising 6.1 percentage points from a 3.3 percent share in 2014 to 9.4 percent this year. Next were Santa Rose, California; Boulder, Colorado; Truckee, California; Fredericksburg, Texas; Heber, Utah; Boston; Seattle; and Santa Fe, New Mexico. Rounding out the top 10 was Charleston, which saw its seven-figure houses increase 2.1 percentage points in three years from 4.9 percent to 7 percent.

The story highlighted Denver for its recreational activities and as an attraction for Californians,…

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