Tom Kalinski, RE/MAX of Boulder

Winter of 2022 has been hot for many of America’s real estate markets – and Boulder ranks among the top five. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), affordability and a location near bigger, more expensive cities are the main drivers for most of the highly desirable areas.

Take the No. 1 hottest area in the nation: Manchester, New Hampshire. Analysis by looked at demand and number of days on the market – or how quickly homes are selling in that area. Manchester property listings reportedly had 3.4 times more visitors than the national average and homes were for sale 33 days – half of the national average of 61 days. The high demand drove median list prices up 11.1% over the past year, to $450,000.

Yet some of America’s hottest markets in January ranked for factors other than affordability. Boulder – No. 5 on the list – saw a median price of $1,250,000 up 28.6% at the end of December 2021 over 2020 while days on market declined 7.8% to 47, according to the Boulder-Longmont Realtor Association.

No. 2 listed Santa Cruz, California, is similarly priced with a median listing price of $1,199,000.

Meanwhile, Topeka, Kansas, and Rochester, New York, Nos. 3 and 4 hottest markets, have listing prices hovering at $159,000 and $200,000 respectively.

“Remote work has moved from a pandemic necessity to a preferred reality for millions of workers across the country,” says George Ratiu, manager of economic research for “In practice, these changes are spotlighting communities located within a two-hour drive from a major urban employment center, a broadening of the traditional commute radius.”

The same factors enable those who can afford to live in some of the most desirable areas of the country to do so.

“The first weeks of 2022 point to an unseasonably active real estate market across the country,” says Ratiu. He says rising mortgage rates are driving the market. “Buyers are seeking to close on homes in an effort to beat rising mortgage rates.”

Mortgage rates jumped to their highest level since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, rising to 3.69% for the week ending Feb. 10, according to Freddie Mac.

Following is the list of January’s hottest real estate markets, reported by NAR.

1. Manchester-Nashua, N.H.
2. Santa Cruz-Watsonville, Calif
3. Topeka, Kan.
4. Rochester, N.Y.
5. Boulder, Colo.

Read the full story at:

By Tom Kalinski. Tom is the broker/owner of RE/MAX of Boulder, the local residential real estate company he established in 1977. He was inducted into Boulder County’s Business Hall of Fame in 2016 and has a 40-year background in commercial and residential real estate. For questions, email Tom at [email protected], call 303.441.5620, or visit