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2 Dallas-Fort Worth counties raise the roof with biggest U.S. housing booms

2 DFW counties raise the roof with biggest U.S. housing booms

Rockwall lake harbor
Rockwall has experienced tremendous growth. Facebook/Rockwall Texas Homes

If you have driven north of Fort Worth and Dallas, through Denton or Rockwall, your eyes aren’t deceiving you. You’ve seen thousands of new residential rooftops pop up in the past decade.

In fact, Rockwall County ranks as one of the primary U.S. metro counties with the most growth in new housing units (36.8 percent) from 2010 to 2020, according to U.S. Census Bureau data released November 2. Among those housing units are single-family homes, condos, townhomes, and apartments.

The number of housing units in Rockwall County rose by 10,280 from 2010 to 2020, the Census Bureau says.

“The number of occupied housing units grows when new housing is built or previously vacant homes become occupied," the Census Bureau explains. "It decreases when housing units become vacant, are demolished, or are converted into other uses.” 

The secret about Rockwall's many charms is out; in 2020, Money magazine named the North Texas to its list of the Best Places to Live in America. Rockwall was No. 4, making its Money list debut based on its “status as one of the fastest-growing cities in one of the nation’s fastest-growing states.” It earned that ranking based on factors such as safety, cost of living, and diversity. As of 2020, the city had experienced 19 percent job growth over in five years and was projected to grow another 17 percent in the next five.

The Money accolade came on the heels of another report by financial website SmartAsset that ranked Rockwall among the top Texas places with the highest median income ($93,269) relative to the cost of living ($44,539).

The Dallas-Fort Worth metro area also claims two spots on the Census Bureau's new list of the 10 “outlying” metro counties with the most growth in housing units from 2010 to 2020. The bureau defines outlying counties as those outside a region’s “urban center.”

No. 1-ranked Denton County saw the number of housing units go up 36 percent from 2010 to 2020 with the addition of 92,136 units. That statistic echoes a recent SmartAsset study declaring Denton among the nation’s top 50 boomtowns. 

No. 3-ranked Kaufman County saw the number of housing units go up 33.7 percent from 2010 to 2020 with the addition of 12,906 units.

Elsewhere in Texas
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the Austin area's Hays County was No. 1 in the nation on the list of primary U.S. metro counties with the most growth in new housing units, with a 57.4 percent increase (34,117 new housing units). Other Texas places on that list include:

  • Third-ranked Comal County, part of the San Antonio metro area — 48.5 percent (22,831 new housing units).
  • Fifth-ranked Williamson County, part of the Austin metro area — 46 percent (74,907 new housing units).
  • Seventh-ranked Fort Bend County, part of the Houston metro area — 41 percent (80,880 new housing units).

Other Texas places that appear on the list for “outlying” counties:

  • No. 2 Montgomery County, part of the Houston metro area — 34.2 percent (60,842 new housing units).
  • No. 5 Kendall County, part of the San Antonio metro area — 30.4 percent (4,275 new housing units).
  • No. 8 Bastrop County, part of the Austin metro area — 25.1 percent (7,367 new housing units).