Real Estate

Tompkins County is consistently top-rated as a great place to live.

UNLIKE MANY OTHER COMMUNITIES AROUND THE UNITED STATES, where you see extreme swings in market trends, Tompkins County has experienced much more stability. In addition to strong growth in the real estate market over the past few years, real estate values are holding very well. The colleges help to keep the county’s real estate demand stable without large economic impacts such as recessions or economic booms.

Ithaca boasts a lively, well-educated, and diverse population, and it was ranked one of 19 “Perfect Towns” by Outside magazine in Oct. 2011; Cornell was ranked second in “Best Employers for Workers over 50” by AARP, Sept. 2011; and Ithaca ranked #9 on AARP’s list of “10 Affordable Cities for Retirement.” Ithaca once again was ranked a “Top 100 Places to Live” by, June, ’11; and was ranked a top-10 city for “Carless Retirement” by US News & World Report, online, March 2011; finally, Ithaca is #6 in “America’s Foodiest Towns,” (pop. Under 250,000) by Bon Appétit magazine, Sept. ’10.

Homes closer to the City of Ithaca and the colleges tend to be well-kept, older and more traditional. They also tend to be situated in neighborhoods that are within walking distance to shops, restaurants and other small businesses. Drive up any of the surrounding hills away from downtown Ithaca and you will see a mix of single-family homes and townhouses of all ages, sizes and styles. Explore the countryside and you will observe both old farmsteads and unique rustic homes set privately on wooded lots. Lakefront properties remain popular vacation sites for residents and tourists alike as the year ’round beauty of Cayuga Lake can’t be denied!


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For information about County, municipal and school tax rates: