You will see some definite patterns in EM's picks for the 50 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) to watch in 2022 (see chart on page 2). While Austin, TX, was once again ranked as the fastest-growing MSA in the nation, Florida has 11 metros on the list and only North Carolina and South Carolina, each with five metros in this year’s ranking had nearly half the count of the Sunshine State.
The Northport-Sarasota-Bradenton MSA, Jacksonville MSA, and Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL MSA, led the parade in Florida, and if you look further down the ranking, you will see Florida’s Gulf Coast is one of the fastest-growing regions in the U.S., with the Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Crestview-Fort Walton Beach-Destin, Naples-Marco Island, and Punta Gorda MSAs also on the list.
Electrical Marketing ranks the nation’s 300-plus MSAs on the basis of their growth rates in population, single-family & multi-family permits and low employment rates, and how they compare to national averages. In many cases, the MSAs in the chart are growing at double or triple the rate of the national average. For example, from 2015 to 2020, Austin added 292,489 new residents, for a +14.6% increase that’s more than five times the U.S. average during that time period. With new employers like Tesla building facilities, big-time downtown development and an estimated 146 new residents moving in each day, don’t expect this torrid pace of growth to cool off.
Because of comparatively high unemployment rates, some perennial all-stars in market growth like the Phoenix and San Antonio, TX MSAs did not make this year’s list.