Alabama is a beautiful, varied state. It has 32.4 million acres of land, with 8.9 million used as farmland. Fifty three miles border the Gulf of Mexico, and another 607 miles of shoreline, which includes islands are in the Gulf. Alabama has coastal swamps, mountainous land to the north and grassy plains in the middle. Forests cover close to 22 million acres.
The population of Alabama in 2005 was 4.5 million people. The majority, or 3.2 million, live in suburban and urban areas. Only 1.3 million live in rural settings. Those living in rural areas live on or work in a farm setting. The top three exports of farm products out of Alabama are poultry, cotton and peanuts.
In the year 2000, there were 1.9 million housing units, which is 17.6% higher than ten years earlier. Of those units, 1.08 million are in suburban and urban areas and 880 thousand remain in the rural areas. The median value of occupied homes is $85k.
Home sale prices for 2006 has climbed. The average sale price of a single family home is $146K. In and around Huntsville, the average sale price is $150K with the houses being on the market an average of 60-90 days. This price is 5-10% higher than last years average.
Alabama boasts of having the lowest property taxes of any state, thereby bringing young families into suburban areas. Suburban areas are growing the fastest, since they offer better schools and more jobs. Sales for single family homes throughout the state continue to show growth overall, but rural areas are constant or on the decrease. The popularity of suburban and urban living is drawing people out of the country and into subdivisions.