Mapping America’s Next Tech Hubs: A Look at Housing Market and Migration Trends in Atlanta, Austin, D.C. and Other Hot Destinations for Tech Companies

Real Estate News & Analysis

Mapping America’s Next Tech Hubs: A Look at Housing Market and Migration Trends in Atlanta, Austin, D.C. and Other Hot Destinations for Tech Companies

On an interactive map, we’re tracking the moves—as they relate to housing market and migration trends—of several major West Coast tech companies that have announced new offices in other parts of the country.

Several Silicon Valley- and Seattle-based tech companies are opening new campuses in places like Atlanta, Austin and Nashville, where home prices are lower and it’s easier to break into the real estate market.

We’ve put together an interactive map highlighting some of the metro areas where select tech companies are opening new locations, along with information on the latest trends in local home-sale prices migrationas measured by the share of people searching Redfin.com for local homes from outside the area. Scroll down for more detailed information on which companies are moving to which metro.

On the map above, circles correspond to companies opening offices in the metro area where the circle sits. Hover over a circle to see the number of jobs a company is adding in that particular area (the bigger the circle, the more jobs), along with sale price and migration information for the metro. To view just one company from the list, type its name in the “Highlight Companies” box. For companies adding “hundreds” of jobs to a certain metro area, we used the number 300 on the map as an estimation. 

Many of the metros shown are already popular destinations for Redfin.com home searchers looking to move to a different area. Four of the metrosAtlanta, Portland, Seattle and Austinwhere major tech companies are adding a significant amount of jobs were among the most popular destinations in the fourth quarter of 2018.

For instance, 29.3 percent of Redfin users searching for homes in Austin, where Apple is building a massive new campus, were from outside the area. And of the people looking to move to Austin, nearly 20 percent came straight from the Bay Area, the most common origin of people heading to ATX.


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Andrew Vallejo, a Redfin agent in Austin, said most of his clients over the last two years are tech workers and they’re having an impact on the real estate market. Homebuyer interest in the Austin area has accelerated since Apple announced in December it’s building a campus with room for up to 15,000 employees and reports emerged in January that Google could add 5,000 employees to the area.

“Since mid-February, the market in Austin has really picked up and now it’s moving in full swing. We’ve been seeing multiple offers on almost every single listing,” Vallejo said. “That’s especially true in areas near tech company expansions like North Austin and East Austin, which are experiencing increased interest from homebuyers and a rise in prices. Just this past month, I had two investors go under contract on homes near the new Apple campus.”

In Nashville, where Amazon is opening a new 5,000-person office, local Redfin agent Scott Mosley said homebuyers are even more serious about Music City now that the tech giant has cancelled plans to open a massive New York City campus. “I’ve already had investors call to inquire about buying properties near the Amazon campus, and I expect the market to get hotter and hotter as it gets closer to opening. I expect prices to tick up,” Mosley said. “I also think Amazon’s forthcoming office will inspire other tech companies to move into Nashville, and that will contribute to interest in the market.”

Amazon’s hometown of Seattle is worth paying attention to: Amazon is opening major new offices in Crystal City and Nashville, the latter of which has a median sale price of $279,000 compared to $547,000 in the Seattle area. But Seattle is also welcoming thousands of new jobs from Bay Area companies such as Facebook and Google. In late 2018 it recaptured its place on the list of most popular migration destinations after two quarters during which more people were looking to leave Seattle than move in.

The list below features the same selection of companies and metro areas as the interactive map above, but with more information on the corporate moves. All migration and home-price data is based on metro areas.

 

Atlanta, GA

Companies: Pandora & Square

Details: Music streaming company Pandora turned Atlanta into its southeastern headquarters last year, and online payments business Square also leased new office space in the city. Both companies are based in the Bay Area.

Number of jobs: Pandora can accommodate about 250 employees in Atlanta, while Square has space for roughly 100.

Share of local Redfin.com searches in Atlanta by out-of-towners: 26.8%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Atlanta: New York

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $235,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 8.3%

Median household income for Atlanta (2017): $65,381

 

Austin, TX

Companies: Apple, Google & Amazon

Details: Apple announced in December that it’s building a new $1 billion campus in Austin and expanding outward from its Cupertino, California headquarters. It expects to become the largest private employer in the Texas capital. And in the beginning of 2019, Mountain View, California-based Google signed a lease for a 35-story tower in downtown Austin, followed by another lease in East Austin. And about six weeks after Amazon’s abandonment of its New York HQ2, it said it would expand into a new 145,000-square-foot office in Austin. 

Number of jobs: The new campus will initially accommodate 5,000 new employees, with the capacity to grow to 15,000. Apple already employs 6,200 people in Austin, more than any other city except Cupertino, California. Google’s new building could house up to 5,000 employees. And Austin can expect to see 800 Amazon tech jobs. 

Share of local Redfin.com searches in Austin by out-of-towners: 29.3%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Austin: Bay Area

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $295,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): -0.6%

Median household income for Austin (2017): $73,800

Average base salary for an Amazon software engineer: $105,000

Average base salary for an Apple software engineer: $122,253

Average base salary for a Google software engineer: $123,871

 

Bridgeport, AL (located roughly 130 miles northeast of Birmingham)

Company: Google

Details: In April 2018, Google broke ground on a $600 million data center in Bridgeport, Alabama. 

Number of jobs: During the initial phase of its Bridgeport operations, Google will employ 75 to 100 staffers in the new data center. Google commissioned a study last year suggesting that for every job created at its data center, another 4.9 jobs will be created in the area.

Share of Redfin.com searches in Birmingham by out-of-towners (Birmingham is the closest Alabama area for which Redfin has migration data): 39.8%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Birmingham: New York

Median sale price (Feb. 2019) (Birmingham): $187,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019) (Birmingham): 0%

Median household income for Birmingham (2017): $53,107

Average base salary for a Google data center technician: $105,195

 

Boston, MA 

Company: Apple, Amazon & Google

Details: The same time Apple announced it would add thousands of jobs in Austin, it said it would also grow operations in Boston. Amazon is building a 430,000-square-foot office in the city, and Google is in the process of occupying a newly built tower.

Number of jobs: Apple is adding hundreds of jobs in Boston and Amazon is adding around 2,000. Google, which currently has around 1,500 employees in the city, is expected to double its workforce.

Share of Redfin.com searches in Boston by out-of-towners: 13.3%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Boston: New York

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $450,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 2.7%

Median household income for Boston (2017): $85,691

Average base salary for an Amazon software engineer: $105,000

Average base salary for an Apple software engineer: $122,253

Average base salary for a Google software engineer: $123,871

 

Boulder, CO (located roughly 30 miles northwest of Denver)

Companies: Apple, Amazon & Google

Details: Apple is also expanding its presence in Boulder, Colorado. Google opened a brand-new Boulder campus last year. Amazon, meanwhile, announced last August that it’s building a new 37,000-square-foot office in downtown Boulder.

Number of jobs: Apple already employs somewhere between 100 and 250 people in Boulder, a number that will grow to up to 500 in the next four years. Google’s office has space for up to 1,500 employees, and Amazon’s advertising office in Boulder that’s expanding rapidly.

Share of Redfin.com searches in Denver by out-of-towners (Denver is the closest area for which Redfin has migration data): 18.1%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Denver: Bay Area

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $519,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 3.8%

Median household income for Boulder (2017): $80,834

Average base salary for an Amazon software engineer: $105,000

Average base salary for an Apple software engineer: $122,253

Average base salary for a Google software engineer: $123,871

 

Chicago, IL

Companies: Google, Facebook & Uber

Details: Google already employs roughly 1,000 workers in its Chicago office, and it recently leased more than 100,000 square feet of new space in the city. Facebook has also signed a lease on hundreds of thousands of square feet of new space in Chicago, which it already considers its Midwest headquarters. And Uber is planning to expand its freight business in the Windy City.

Number of jobs: The new building gives Google the capacity to double its workforce in Chicago by the end of 2019, with many of the jobs on the finance team. Facebook will add roughly 500 new jobs. Uber is adding hundreds of new jobs.

Share of Redfin.com searches in Chicago by out-of-towners: 8.9%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Chicago: Milwaukee

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $230,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 2.7%

Median household income for Chicago (2017): $68,403

Average base salary for a Google software engineer: $123,871

Average base salary for a Facebook software engineer: $121,083

Average base salary for an Uber software engineer: $117,000

 

Los Angeles, CA

Company: Apple & Amazon

Details: Apple is boosting its presence in Culver City, a small city in Los Angeles. The company is leasing a new 128,000-square-foot building that will open in late 2019. And like Austin, Los Angeles is set to receive some of the 25,000 Amazon jobs that are no longer going to Long Island City.

Number of jobs: By the end of 2022, Apple will employ more than 1,000 people in Culver City. The city is already home to a large Amazon hub, which houses entertainment branches such as Amazon Studios, Amazon Video and IMDb. Amazon will likely add hundreds of jobs.

Share of Redfin.com searches in Los Angeles by out-of-towners: 10.5%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Los Angeles: New York

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $600,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 0.8%

Median household income for Los Angeles (2017): $65,006

Average base salary for an Amazon software engineer: $105,000

Average base salary for an Apple software engineer: $122,253

 

Nashville, TN

Companies: Amazon, Apple & Lyft

Details: In addition to its Crystal City HQ2, Amazon is moving forward with its new Nashville office. The company will house its employees in downtown Nashville. It’s the single largest jobs announcement in Tennessee’s history. San Francisco-based Lyft, meanwhile, opened a major customer service headquarters in Music City in 2015. And Apple is opening a music-focused office in Nashville.

Number of jobs: Nashville will be home to more than 5,000 new Amazon jobs. Lyft has hired 750 employees for its Nashville location. Apple’s new location is small, with reports suggesting it will accommodate just about 30 employees.

Share of Redfin.com searches in Nashville by out-of-towners: 33.2%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Nashville: New York

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $276,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 0.4%

Median household income for Nashville (2017): $63,939

Average base salary for an Amazon software engineer: $105,000

Average base salary for an Apple software engineer: $122,253

Average base salary for a Lyft software engineer: $138,500

 

New York, NY

Company: Apple & Google

Details: Amazon may not be moving into New York, but Apple is planning to expand its operations in the city and Google is investing $1 billion into a new campus in the city.

Number of jobs: Amazon is adding hundreds of employees and Google will more than double its headcount in the city over the next decade (it currently employs 7,000 people in New York).

Share of Redfin.com searches in New York by out-of-towners: 12.3%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in New York: Philadelphia

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $938,000*

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 2%

Median household income for New York (2017): $75,368

Average base salary for an Apple software engineer: $122,253

Average base salary for a Google software engineer: $123,871

*Average sale price of a home in New York City in Q4 2018, per REBNY. YoY growth is also from REBNY.

 

Pittsburgh, PA

Companies: Apple, Amazon & Facebook

Details: Pittsburgh is another area that will welcome new Apple jobs as part of the tech giant’s expansion across the country. It’s also set to receive some of the jobs that would have gone to Amazon’s New York HQ2, and Facebook is set to occupy a new four-story building in the city.

Number of jobs: Apple already employs 1,275 people in the state of Pennsylvania, including retail, and plans to add hundreds more jobs in Pittsburgh. Amazon is also likely to add hundreds of jobs in the city, and Facebook will add up to 500 new employees.

Share of Redfin.com searches in Pittsburgh by out-of-towners: 27.3%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Los Angeles: New York

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $155,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 4.1%

Median household income for Pittsburgh (2017): $58,521

Average base salary for an Amazon software engineer: $105,000

Average base salary for an Apple software engineer: $122,253

Average base salary for a Facebook software engineer: $121,083

 

Portland, OR

Company: Apple & Amazon

Details: Apple is also adding hundreds of jobs in Portland, Oregon. The metro area is already home to a few Apple offices, including a software development location in Vancouver, Washington and an advanced computation group in Southeast Portland. The city is also in the process of welcoming more Amazon jobs.

Number of jobs: Apple is adding hundreds of new jobs, which will be in addition to the ones already there. Amazon, which currently houses about 400 of its employees in Portland, is set to increase that number to more than 1,000.

Share of Redfin.com searches in Portland by out-of-towners: 20.1%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Portland: Bay Area

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $390,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 3%

Median household income for Portland (2017): $71,931

Average base salary for an Amazon software engineer: $105,000

Average base salary for an Apple software engineer: $122,253

 

Seattle, WA

Companies: Facebook, Google & Apple

Details: Amazon isn’t the only company with a major Seattle presence. Menlo Park, California-based Facebook is expanding its Seattle-area footprint with a new engineering office in Seattle and at least two new locations in the city’s Eastside suburbs. Google is building a major new campus in Seattle, too, and Apple is also growing its presence.

Number of jobs: As of the middle of 2018, Facebook already employed more than 2,000 workers in the area. With the multiple new locations, it could add thousands more employees. Google already employs thousands of people in Seattle, and its new building could house thousands more. Apple is adding hundreds of jobs.

Share of Redfin.com searches in Seattle by out-of-towners: 13.8%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Seattle: Bay Area

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $547,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 3.3%

Median household income for Seattle (2017): $82,133

Average base salary for an Apple software engineer: $122,253

Average base salary for a Facebook software engineer: $121,083

Average base salary for a Google software engineer: $123,871

 

Washington, D.C.

Company: Amazon

Details: Amazon may have scrapped plans to open a major new office in New York City, but it’s sticking to its decision to open an HQ2 in the Crystal City neighborhood of Arlington, Virginia, located in the Washington, D.C. metro area.

Number of jobs: The Seattle-based company is adding more than 25,000 employees in Arlington, with hiring beginning this year.

Share of local Redfin.com searches in Washington, D.C. by out-of-towners: 7.7%

Top origin (metro area) of out-of-state Redfin.com users searching for homes in Washington, D.C.: New York

Median sale price (Feb. 2019): $375,000

YoY growth in sale price (Feb. 2019): 1.4%

Median household income for Washington, D.C. (2017): $99,669

Average base salary for an Amazon software engineer: $105,000

Moving to one of these burgeoning tech hubs for a new job? Check out Redfin’s chief economist Daryl Fairweather’s guide to evaluating corporate relocation packages, in which she discusses the costs of relocating—and whether it’s better to take a cash bonus or get your moving expenses covered.

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