With about 48,000 residents, Corvallis is nestled in the natural splendor of Oregon. Since it is home to Oregon State University as well as numerous public agencies, about a third of the area's workers are employed by the government, says Mysty Rusk, the president of the Corvallis-Benton Chamber Coalition. At the same time, this intellectually curious university town has long possessed a creative, entrepreneurial spark. "We have the highest [number of] patents per capita in the United States," Rusk says. And although large companies like Hewlett Packard and Samaritan Health Services are among the area's leading private employers, the community doesn't forget about the little guy. The local chamber of commerce plays an active role in helping entrepreneurs turn their ideas into payrolls. "We have hundreds of little startups," Rusk says. Corvallis's 2008 median home sale price was $245,000. Area home prices should increase an average of 4 percent annually over the next 10 years, Moody's Economy.com projects.
If moose sightings are more your style, check out Anchorage, Alaska, where Moody's Economy.com projects that home prices will appreciate by an average of 3.8 percent a year over the next 10 years. The real estate market in the Duluth, Minn., area is expected to post similar gains of about 3.7 percent annually. Home prices near Sandusky, Ohio, are also expected to increase an average of 3.7 percent a year over the next 10 years. That's only slightly ahead of the Santa Fe, N.M., area's projected 3.6 percent annual gains. The revitalization of Pittsfield, Mass.'s, downtown district could help area home prices rise an average of 3.5 percent a year over the next 10 years. Meanwhile, Decatur, Ill.'s, development into a green energy hub should help its housing market post roughly 3.4 percent annual gains, according to Moody's Economy.com.
Here's the projected average annual percent change in home prices from the fourth quarter of 2008 to the fourth quarter of 2018: