California claimed six of the 10 most expensive zip codes in the U.S. in 2019. At $7 million, Atherton’s 94027 is the #1 most expensive zip code for the third year in a row.
The Priciest U.S. Zip Codes by Closed Home Sales
PropertyShark has been tracking the most expensive U.S. zip codes for years, analyzing nationwide residential transactions to provide the most accurate snapshot of the nation’s most expensive real estate markets. In order to create the most accurate benchmark, year-to-date residential sales were analyzed to determine the median sale price of each zip code. Due to a large number of ties in medians, 125 zip codes made the list as the 100 most expensive.
Calculating medians based on sale prices rather than asking prices more accurately reflects the reality on the ground in the country’s most cutthroat markets – where low supply pairs with high demand, often pushing sale prices above the initial asking figures. It also ensures that ultra-luxury properties – which generally spend extended periods of time on the market and often sell with notable price cuts – don’t skew the numbers away from what the market is actually willing to pay.
California was once again the uncontested leader of pricey zip codes.
Hitting an all-time high in 2019, California claimed a jaw-dropping 91 zip codes of the 125 zips featuring the 100 most expensive medians, including 6 of 10 priciest. And, although New York State is far from a true rival of California’s sky- high residential prices, it remained the East Coast’s most expensive market, ranking 18 zips in our top 100 – the second-highest number and just one zip less than last year.
California’s growing domination of our top 100 comes as no surprise, considering the dynamic price growth recorded in the state’s most important metros. Nearly half of Metro L.A.’s markets saw their medians rise at least 20% in just five years, while a third of the Bay Area underwent price surges of 40% or more.
Although California and New York State completely dominated 2019’s top 100, isolated pockets of extreme affluence and luxury real estate meant that the zip codes of nine additional states made the ranking zips. Specifically, Connecticut and Massachusetts each contributed three zips, New Jersey, Nevada and Washington had two each, and Arizona, Florida, New Hampshire and Maryland are each represented by one zip.
Looking at overall numbers, 63 zip codes experienced contractions in their median sale price compared to year-ago figures, 38 zip codes saw their medians climb – including the spectacular 71% price surge recorded in Brooklyn’s 10001 – and 4 zip codes’ medians were unchanged. An additional 20 zips are new compared to last year’s ranking.
Furthermore, 14 zip codes posted medians above the $3 million mark this year – one less than in 2018. However, the 5% price growth registered in Atherton, California’s 94027 resulted in a historic high, making 2019 the first year in which a zip code’s median sale price surpassed $7 million. As expected, this made Atherton’s 94027 the #1 most expensive zip code in the U.S. in 2019 with a median sale price of $7,050,000. This was also the second year in a row that growth in Atherton’s median made headlines. A year ago, Atherton asserted itself with a 35% jump in its median.
Sagaponack, New York’s 11962 also held onto its position from last year, although with a significant 22% price contraction from 2018’s $5,500,000. As such, Sagaponack’s 11962 ranked as the #2 most expensive U.S. zip code in 2019 with a median sale price of $4,300,000. This also made 11962 the most expensive zip code in New York State, and, naturally, the most expensive East Coast zip.
Up two positions from last year, Santa Monica, California’s 90402 was the #3 most expensive zip code in the U.S. with a median sale price of $4,154,000. This was the result of a 10% year-over-year increase in 90402’s median and a 23% contraction in the median of Boston’s 02199, which had ranked third in 2018.
California claimed the fourth spot, as well, with iconic Beverly Hills zip 90210 , which posted a $4,080,000 median sale price, up 27% from last year’s figure. The top five was completed by another New York State entry: NYC’s 10007, which also underwent a 27% price increase, reaching a 2019 median sale price of $3,900,000.
On the opposite end of the spectrum was Gibson Island, Maryland’s 21056, which ranked as the 100th most expensive zip code in the U.S. with a median sale price of $1,401,000. Although 2018’s 100th priciest zip – 07078 in Short Hills, NJ – featured a slightly higher median of $1,426,250, that is less a result of decreasing prices, and more a consequence of the even larger number of ties in this year’s rankings.