What’s Hotter Right Now: Arlington’s Weather or the Real Estate Market?
It might be sweltering right now in Crystal City, Arlington, but it sure isn’t the weather that’s bringing the heat. With the recent announcement of Amazon’s sister HQ2 building being built in Arlington––one of two new locations being constructed by the ecommerce conglomerate––the local real estate market has skyrocketed into space. How far into space? The market has seen a 17 percent uptick in home sale prices, with a turnaround of 6 days!
As to why everyone is moving to Northern Virginia, there are a plethora of reasons all revolving around Amazon HQ2: new jobs, real estate speculation, economic prosperity, nearness to the vibrant district of Washington D.C., side income through rental properties, etc. Even Virginia Tech is now building their own campus in nearby Alexandria, hoping the proximity (i.e. new Amazon job openings) will be a key selling point in dissuading UVA hopefuls from moving to Charlottesville for their schooling.
As of right now, the average home price in Arlington county is topped out at $713,000. Agents and experts believe the housing supply is “so sparse that some popular zip codes in Arlington and Alexandria show no homes for sale at all”. Essentially, Arlington has turned into Monaco.
Developers are acting quick to match supply with demand, but as to how fast they can safely build desired homes is up in the air. That being said, local constituents are worried about how these prices will affect middle-class residents who making way more than minimum wage.
This is not your usual gentrification model like what is happening with MLS franchises in cities like Cincinnati. Arlington and Fairfax counties are wealthy areas known for housing affluent businessmen and politicians. The middle-class people are the ones who will be kicked out. Just to put this into perspective, these are households that rake in more than $65,000 a year––an exorbitantly higher median than most other areas experiencing gentrification.
The construction of Amazon HQ2 is only the beginning of the economic growth of Northern Virginia. Over the next five years, expect massive suburban and urban development that reaches beyond the D.C.-Maryland-Virginia sector, with an expansive job market fueled by Amazon and new surrounding businesses. Other supporting careers, such as real estate agents, will also see massive growth both in salary and opportunity.
It’s going to be a hot summer in Northern Virginia and you won’t have to thank the weather for the heat.
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