Huntsville Housing Market is Healthiest in Alabama

A healthy housing market is stable and affordable.

And, according to a study by New York-based SmartAsset, Huntsville has the healthiest housing market in the state.

In fact, Madison County is home to four of Alabama’s 10 healthiest markets. Huntsville is joined by Harvest at No. 2, Madison at No. 5 and Meridianville at No. 6.

In assessing the study, SmartAsset, a financial technology company, considered four factors: stability, affordability, fluidity and risk of loss.

Affordability accounted for 40 percent of the  Healthiest Markets Index, while each of the other three factors accounted for 20 percent. When data on the four factors was unavailable for certain cities, those cities were excluded from the final rankings.

To read the study and methodology, visit

Huntsville Rent Increase Among Highest in the Country

Huntsville’s growth is putting a strain on the housing market with a limited number of properties in its inventory.

Now, a new analysis shows rental prices are rising above the national average during the global pandemic. In fact, Huntsville had the seventh-highest increase at 10.5 percent, according to the analysis by AdvisorSmith.

The numbers showed:

  • The rent increase in Huntsville is 11 times higher than the average increase nationally.

  • The weighted average rent in Huntsville jumped from $1,004 in 2019 to $1,068 in September 2020.

  • Huntsville had a higher percentage rent increase than Hoover (6 percent for No. 69) and Mobile (5.9 percent for 75th).

The pandemic has created major changes for Americans in personal and professional lives. One place where the pandemic has caused waves is in the residential rental market, with dramatic increases and decreases in rents in certain communities in the country.

For its analysis, AdvisorSmith examined the trends in rental prices in more than 500 U.S. cities to determine where rents are rising and falling the most.

Rent prices for studios, one-,two-, three-, and four-bedroom rental units in September 2020 were examined and compared to average rents in 2019. For each city, AdvisorSmith determined the weighted average increase or decrease in rents based upon each city’s composition of rental housing units. They then ranked the top 100 cities where rents are rising and falling the most.

The analysis showed rents increased an average of 0.9 percent during the study period. However, the range of rent changes was very wide, with the largest decrease being -34.7 percent, and the largest increase being 12.5 percent, as Americans made new choices about where to live based on shifts in the economy.

The cities where rents rose the most in the past nine months include cities on the outskirts of major metropolitan areas, as well as some midsize cities.

The top 10 cities are: Stockbridge, Ga., 12.5 percent; Avondale, Ariz., 11.6 percent; Spokane Valley, Wash., 11.3 percent; Chino, Calif., 10.8 percent; East Point, Ga., 10.7 percent; Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, 10.7 percent; HUNTSVILLE, 10.5 percent; Ridgeland, Miss., 10.4 percent; Goodyear, Ariz., 10 percent; Augusta, Ga., 9.6 percent.

Rents fell dramatically in some of the nation’s most expensive cities for renters. The top three spots were taken by cities in Texas and North Dakota with economies focused on oil and energy. With the price of oil plunging due to a reduction in driving during the coronavirus pandemic, demand for housing in these communities has fallen substantially.

Also highly represented in the top 25 were cities in the San Francisco Bay Area, New York City, the Boston metropolitan area, and a few suburbs of Washington, D.C. Many of these cities, which have some of the highest rents in the country, contain professional and technical workers, many of who have been working from home for much of the year.