America’s historic cities and districts connect us across time to those who came before us. They help us tell the story of our country. They are distinctive, real places that define us by where we are in time, where we’ve been and what we’ve done, rather than the now too many, cookie cutter no places that could be and are anywhere.

America’s historic districts and cities also hold their value. According to Tom Mayes, vice president for the National Trust for Historic Preservation, historic cities and districts tend to hold their value better during economic downturns and they appreciate more during upswings…they come with built-in character…and have a uniqueness…” people inherently appreciate.

According to realtor.com, the “most” historic cities are Cambridge, MA, Charleston, NC, Davenport, Iowa, St. Louis, MS and Santa Fe, NM. Many if not all of these cities have and continue to develop adaptive reuse projects by converting historic schools, warehouses and old homes into community centers, affordable housing and working hubs for tech start-ups and artists.

Cities may have to develop reuse ordinances and guidelines to update out-of-date building codes and restrictions but all of the cities listed below have done just that in order to reap the benefits of creative economies. Homebuyers of older homes may have to do more maintenance and more remodeling to comply with building codes but those buyers are doing just that, with pleasure.

Here are the country’s most historic cities, according to realtor.com:

  1. Cambridge, MA
    1. Median list price of single-family home – $949,000
    2. Number of properties in the National Registry – 209
  2. Charleston, NC
    The popular Charlotte Area Transit System
    1. Median list price of single-family home – $305,000
    2. Number of properties in the National Registry – 100
  3. Davenport, Iowa
    1. Median list price of single-family home – $139,900
    2. Number of properties in the National Registry – 251
  4. Louis, MS
    1. Median list price of single-family home – $174,900
    2. Number of properties in the National Registry – 435
  5. Santa Fe, NM
    1. Median list price of single-family home – $496,500
    2. Number of properties in the National Registry – 61