Urban Land Institute has released their “Emerging Trends in Real Estate” report for 2015 and the news for Seattle is favorable!
The Institute points to the principle of the “24-hour city” which needs to be adopted by urban areas in order to have a thriving downtown. They note that downtown transformations need to combine “housing, retail, dining and walk to work offices to regenerate urban cores” in order to increase investment for single family and multi-family housing. While most of the emerging, revitalized urban centers aren’t true 24-hour cities, they have certainly expanded from 9-5 town into “18-hour markets”. According to the report, investors are attracted to markets with “vibrant urban centers”. Some of Seattle’s most vibrant neighborhoods fit this bill.
In the report, the Urban Land Institute points to different Markets to Watch in 2015. The basis for these being markets to watch is the demand for “desired assets” which is expected to drive prices up and returns down and subsequently the need for alternative investment options which yield higher returns. One strategy noted for this in the report was the potential for investors to look at markets close to a major metropolitan area.
Seattle ranked 8th on the list overall which measures investment, development, and home building potential in 2015. Portland, Oregon ranked 16th and Tacoma ranked 62nd (this is the first year Tacoma has been measured as a separate entity outside of Seattle).
Another factor that was examined was population growth. Between 2010-2013, the urban population growth in Seattle rose 6.9% to 2.88 million people which also helped its placement in the “good market” category.
Technology is a local driver of employment in Seattle and the millennial generation is flocking in to take those jobs. It is a “top capital destination” which attracts institutional and local investors.
The report predicted that the job market in Seattle will expand 2.6% in 2014-2015.
We have a lot to be thankful for in Seattle this Thanksgiving. A robust job market, strong population growth, and of course, we live in the most beautiful place in the country! Happy Thanksgiving to you!