The Great Recession will surely go down in the record books as one of the most difficult economic periods of this country’s history. The recession changed a lot about American culture, perhaps most dramatically the way we live. Demarcations between classes became more distinct and the dangling carrot for many a would-be home owner seemed further and further away, resulting in multiple generations of families shacking up together and a rental market that wouldn’t quit.
Out of all this chaos however, cities such as Washington, DC have come out evolved, mostly for the better. According to Governing magazine, which cited data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the Capital City is gentrifying at a staggering rate, topped only by Portland when the 50 largest cities across the country were compared.
The study reports that of the eligible tracts to gentrify from 2000 to 2013, 51.9 percent gentrified. In comparison, from 1990 to 2000, only about 4.9 percent of eligible Washington, DC tracts actually gentrified.
In the neighborhoods where homes were previously in the lower 40th percentile of value, the amount of home owners with college degrees has upticked while the median home value has crept up into the top one-third percentile. Some of the most rapidly changing neighborhoods cited in the study include Columbia Heights, NoMa, Navy Yard and Petworth, which have become some of the trendiest areas in the city.
Trendy Areas Attract New Home Owners
While there are many advantages and disadvantages to the gentrification of the city, there is no doubt that Washington, DC is one city that is not afraid of change, and that’s not a bad thing. Part of the appeal of DC to many new home owners is its ability to transition and come out of difficult times, such as the Great Recession, as an even more diverse and ebullient place to live than before.
One group that has been a noticeable omission from the housing market since the recession is first-time home buyers. With the diversification of Washington, DC’s economy, the changing neighborhoods have proved to be a particularly more hospitable place for first-time home buyers to settle down and purchase a condo.
According to the D.C. Office of Planning, there are more millennials living in the rapidly changing neighborhoods cited in Governing magazine’s study. Columbia Heights, Mt. Pleasant, Pleasant Plains and Park View were found to be areas where the amount of millennial residents increased by 32 percent from 2000 to 2010.
The city has long been touting its thriving construction sector, with condo and multi-use developments popping up throughout the city to accommodate this group of home buyers in order to make for a healthier overall housing market for many years to come.
Throughout its stages of change, Washington, DC still manages to maintain its character and appeal to home buyers of all demographics. If you are in the market for a Washington, DC condo, please feel free to contact me today.