As more people flee the Midwest and Northeast for the sunshine, warm weather and rosy job prospects of the Sun Belt, the surging demand has made housing less affordable in places like Phoenix, Atlanta and Tampa. If housing prices were removed from the cost of living index, inflation in those areas is about average. But figuring them in, Phoenix saw the largest increase in inflation nationwide at 8.9 percent year-over-year in February. That’s mainly because median rents were up 26 percent in that time frame. That said, the Sun Belt is still more affordable than places like New York and California.