Real estate brokerage Redfin has released a new online tool in partnership with the White House Opportunity Project that helps Americans find homes within a 30-minute car-free commute to jobs that are nearby.
Called the Opportunity Score, the tool gives a score between zero and 100 to an address based on its accessibility to jobs that don’t require a car to get there. The tool also adjusts for competition for local jobs and provides a snapshot of prices of homes for sale and rents in the neighborhood.
For instance, addresses in downtown San Francisco and Daly City (about eight miles southwest of San Francisco) both yield an Opportunity Score of 100. That means that there are plenty of jobs that pay at least $40,000 and are within a 30-minute public transit commute (i.e., not requiring the use of a personal car). But, as the tool also shows, the cost of a two-bedroom home vary wildly between San Francisco ($1 million for ) and Daly City ($645,000).
Even though there are jobs available in both areas, one may be a more realistic choice for a family when taking affordability into consideration. On the other hand, a low scoring neighborhood does not necessarily mean that it’s an undesirable place to live. Shaker Heights, near Cleveland, Ohio, has a score of 29—but very affordable housing (about $100,000 for a one-bedroom). The low number means that most people will need a car to get to their jobs that are most likely going to be more than 30 minutes away.
As part of the tool’s launch, Redfin also ranked the 50 most populous urban areas. Coming in at the top slot as the most accessible area for workers without a car is San Jose, California. Milwaukee, Wisconsin came in at number two, and Albuquerque, New Mexico at number three. The Bridgeport/Stamford, Connecticut area, Miami, and Detroit came in at 48th, 49th, and 50th, respectively.