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These 5 Cities Will Have Biggest COLA Sticker Shock in 2018

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If your clients are shopping around for a new place to live and work, or simply to retire, it’s important that financial professionals can help them make informed decisions based on their goals and desires and how those fit within their financial plans.

As aging clients retire, for example, many of them look for a change of scenery to spend their golden years and, where someone lives in retirement is a personal choice, but it’s also a financial one. A recent study by GoBankingRates revealed several destinations experiencing expensive growing pains. Portland, Oregon, known for its microbreweries, hipster vibe and fledgling tech scene, tops the study’s list and is expected to see the highest rise in cost of living in 2018.

(Related: 12 Best Big Cities for Successful Aging: 2017)

GoBankingRates reached its findings by analyzing 75 of the largest cities in the U.S. and zeroing in on three key economic indicators: Zillow’s year-over-year median home value forecast; Zillow’s year-over-year median rent forecast; and the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Price Index change between 2014 and 2017.

Findings from the study include:

   •  The Dallas-Fort Worth metro area had the largest predicted increase in home value; anticipates that this area will be the No. 2 housing market in the country next year.

   •  Home prices in Denver will continue to drive costs up in 2018 because of a high demand for homes and low supply of available housing. 

   •  Of the cities on the list, San Francisco had the largest increase in the cost of consumer products and services over the last three years.

Let’s take a closer look at the five cities that will face the biggest COLA sticker shock in 2018:

Downtown San Diego Bay. 

5. San Diego

  • Forecast year-over-year change in home value: 2.86%
  • Forecast year-over-year change in rent: 3.91%
  • CPI 2016-2017: 3.28%
  • Average CPI change 2014-2017: 2.01%

San Diego has the beautiful waterfront and a thriving biotech community. It also has the fourth-highest median home list price and median rent of all of the major metro areas in the U.S., according to Zillow. And, prices are expected to continue to rise next year.

Downtown Atlanta skyline.

4. Atlanta

  • Forecast year-over-year change in home value: 3.34%
  • Forecast year-over-year change in rent: 5.08%
  • CPI 2016-2017: 3.15%
  • Average CPI change 2014-2017: 1.51%

Atlanta is the only city in the top five that resides east of the Mississippi River. The Southern gem is quickly pricing itself out from an affordability standpoint. From June 2014 to June 2017, the median list price for a home rose more than 50 percent, going from under $220,000 to $335,000. According to  the GoBankingRates study, home prices are expected to continue rising in 2018.

Denver Brocons Fans. (Photo: AP)

3. Denver

  • Forecast year-over-year change in home value: 3.52%
  • Forecast year-over-year change in rent: 4.37%
  • CPI 2016-2017: 3.09%
  • Average CPI change 2014-2017: 2.36%

The Mile High city is earning its name these days with home prices continuing to soar. According to the Denver Metro Association of Realtors’ Market Trends Committee, Denver is in flux. It’s among the fastest growing cities in the nation, causing a housing logjam as demand for homes is far outstripping the low supply. The result: housing will continue to drive up home prices in the city in 2018. Of the metro areas included in this study, Denver saw the third-highest average CPI change from 2014 to 2017.

A view of Seattle's Space Needle and skyline. (Photo: AP)

2. Seattle

  • Forecast year-over-year change in home value: 4.86%
  • Forecast year-over-year change in rent: 5.73%
  • CPI 2016-2017: 2.98%
  • Average CPI change 2014-2017: 2.07%

It doesn’t rain everyday in Seattle, it only seems that way, but the gloomy weather isn’t slowing down its growth. Seattle is expected to see the second-highest increase in home value and the largest increase in rent. The city’s rapid growth and rising costs can be attributed to the recent tech boom, as well as the construction of Amazon’s new headquarters.

Hawthorne Bridge and Portland skyline.  

1. Portland, Ore.

  • Forecast year-over-year change in home value: 2.81%
  • Forecast year-over-year change in rent: 5.34%
  • CPI 2016-2017: 4.42%
  • Average CPI change 2014-2017: 2.49%

Boeing, Nike and Intel help drive employment in Portland keeping the housing market humming. In 2014 and 2015, the City of Roses boasted the lowest vacancy rate among the nation’s 75 largest metropolitan areas. While that number fell to 26th in 2016, Portland is expected to have the largest cost of living increase in 2018 and the second-highest increase in rent. That does not bode well for the city’s residents. According to an earlier GoBankingRates study, at this rate, the average income in Portland is not enough to keep pace with the rise in cost of living.

— Related on ThinkAdvisor:

12 Best Big Cities for Successful Aging: 2017

12 Best Small Cities for Successful Aging: 2017


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