Brigham Young founded Salt Lake City, Utah, as a Mormon settlement in 1847. Since then, several factors have caused the city to become more diverse, including the building of the railroad, the growth of a mining industry and increasing immigration from other states. Although the city isn’t large (its population is under 200,000), a sprawling urban area of 1.2 million people surrounds the city and many of these are commuters. Today, the city has the distinction of being one of the nation’s most upwardly-mobile populations.
The economy of Salt Lake is mainly service-oriented with government, trade, healthcare and transportation making up a large section of its workforce. In 2002, the Olympic Winter Games were held in the city and this gave the Utah capital an undeniable economic boost with the building of hotels and restaurants. The city is also home to one Fortune 500 company and two Fortune 1000 companies.
Towards the beginning of 2014, industry experts were beginning to report that the Salt Lake City housing market had emerged from the bust brought on by the Great Recession of 2008. Figures from the real-estate site Trulia bear this out, showing steady house price increases throughout April. The average listing price for a home in Salt Lake is currently $458,847, which represents a 20.9 percent increase compared to the week before. With home values creeping ever higher, now may be a good time to buy if you’re looking for an investment.
Local interest rates on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage are quite low at the moment, ranging from 4.1 to 4.3 percent according to the Zillow mortgage calculator. Based on these rates and an averagely-listed property, expect to make monthly payments between $1,752 and $1,806.
Best neighborhoods in Salt Lake City? Some of the oldest brick properties are located in Sugar House, an attractive, tree-lined neighborhood on the east side of the city. According to Trulia, Sugar House is the city’s most popular neighborhood with an average listing price of $345,563. Good schools are located here and the neighborhood has proximity to both downtown and the University of Utah.
Other good neighborhoods in the city include the young adult hotspot of East Central, the historical and artsy The Avenues (Salt Lake City’s first neighborhood), the suburban Canyon Rim, and the recently-designated historic district of Liberty Wells.